Voluntary commitment

prevention of disater risk


Reducing the impact of natural disasters as an integral component of poverty reduction and sustainable development. Disasters threaten livelihoods as well as international and national efforts to advance development and eradicate poverty. Even if it is not possible to prevent natural disasters, much can be done to build capacities to reduce the vulnerabilities that too often lead to a crisis situation.


These are:
• Safety of schools.
• Exposure to future natural hazards
• Diversification of household livelihoods
The second group would ideally also be subjects of data collection but would probably require new,
specific sample surveys or focus group discussions, or, at a minimum, standardized and period
consultations with experts in the field. These indicators are:
• Local organizational & social capital
• Exposure to violence and abuse
• Homelessness
These six indicators may help to assessment the impact of tsunami recovery activities on social
vulnerability/ capacity or resilience


The number or percentage of schools rebuilt, re-located, or retrofitted to take into account their
exposure to future hazards (flood, landslide, etc. and not just tsunami in the future) is a sensitive
indicator of a number of processes of value in creating a “culture of prevention:”
• Integration of risk awareness into planning
• Application of risk-reduction standards and norms into public works
• Allocation of economic resources to safety of children
• Enhanced community risk awareness through provision of a visible, high profile example of
good practice
• Protection of educational access and continuity of the educational process.
• Provision of a safe shelter and community center space The TRIAM core indicators correctly highlight primary school enrollment, primary school drop out rate,
and numbers primary school students and teachers per school. They also list as an indicator “% of
destroyed/ damaged schools rebuilt or rehabilitated by category by sub-district.”
The last mentioned, however, leaves open the question of safety of the school. Has the rebuilt/
rehabilitated school been reviewed as regard the safety of its location? Has it been retrofitted to make
it seismically safe – at least to the standard of life safety/ safe collapse – in the event of an
earthquake? (OECD, 2004; Wisner et al., 2003)
The issue here isn’t simply whether a year after the tsunami-affected people still live on exposed
coasts. Most or many survivors will necessarily be exposed in that sense. But do they life in houses
that have been raised or strengthened? In addition, perhaps even more important – since the return
rate for tsunami, while uncertain, is probably quite long – have people been resettled or spontaneously
re-housed themselves in zones where they are now exposed to OTHER hazards (Flooding?
Landslide? Chemical or explosive hazards?)
The first set of issues is covered by the core indicators (the items on habitat restoration and coastal
protection); however, spatially-based sample of new settlement would be required to reveal NEW
Diverse livelihood activities by a range of household members is a good hedge against the failure of
one or another of these income streams due to another extreme event. Also, during the recovery
period, even if the pre-tsunami employment or livelihood pursuit has been taken up again, the revenue
may be lower due to missing equipment, use of damaged equipment, and marketing problems. Where
routine household budget surveys allow it, a tally should be made of the number of different activities
by gender and age in the household.
An index of diversity of livelihood activities would complement the 10 core recovery output and
outcome indictors under the category of “livelihood” (5 May 2005).
Perhaps a start might be to keep track from time period to time period the number and type of new
employment opportunities that exist in a locality and the percentage of the workforce in each. Where
livelihood is natural resource-based, it would be good to see if the diversity of natural systems utilized
is increasing or decreasing (e.g. do people just fish, or do they also exploit forest resources, farm,
engage in small scale mining, etc.). The ratio of natural system-dependent livelihoods to those
derived from manufacturing (informal sector or formal employment) would also be helpful.
A number of the reports and reviews of human rights aspects of tsunami recovery have mentioned
sexual abuse and trafficking of women and, in particular, children. This is very hard to measure, but
government and TRIAMS partners should consult with local human rights and women’s advocacy
groups to see if the situation has stabilized.
Where there are crime statistics collected routinely, the incidence of domestic violence as well as
crimes against persons should be monitored among the re-settled population as an early warning of
social pathology associated with unsuccessful re-settlement. Data may also be acquired by
temporally-spaced, standardized interviews with community leaders, religion leaders and counselors,
health workers – especially female ones – who may see undocumented cases of domestic violence
and other forms of abuse.
Success in re-establishing livelihoods and in gaining voice with government so that problems with
infrastructure and social services are addressed in a timely way are both very much facilitated by a
high level of local social organization. This can be measured by the number of citizen groups and
other interest groups (among small business owners, fishermen, women, etc.) that have been formed
or re-started since the tsunami. Unfortunately this is not the sort of thing that is covered by routine administrative data collection unless there is a formal process of registration and governmental
recognition for such groups. Otherwise, local press coverage can be mined for the existence and
range and frequency of activity of such groups.
Second to the safety of schools, this may be the most important indicator of social
vulnerability/ capacity/ resilience both because of the leverage such organization provided in
accessing information and resources, but also because local organization makes possible twoway flow of information with authorities.
This may be the most important indicator of social vulnerability/ capacity/ resilience both because of
the leverage such organization provides in accessing information and resources, but also because
local organization makes possible two-way flow of information with authorities.
If there is baseline data on the number of homeless families and homeless street children and youth,
then an increase may indicate problems with recovery. But why, one might ask, is homeless also an
indicator of risk? Homeless people are more vulnerable to flood and tsunami as they have no shelter.
They are also vulnerable to heat waves, to urban air pollution, to violence and abuse. Homeless street
children and youth may also be at risk to sexual exploitation (and STDs and HIV-AIDS), trafficking,
and violence.
Figure 2 provides the context for understanding the situation of homeless youth, children, and families
in a landscape of likely future urban hazards.

Means of verification

Draft Results Matrices, Monitoring and evaluation


From July 2015 to October 2016

Contact Person

Mr Okusajo Olalekan Gafar
Disaster Preparedness Officer, Nigerian Red Cross Society


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