Duncan Green: How Current East African Crisis Response Can Prevent Future Disasters

The ongoing emergency response to the East African crisis can have a longer-lasting impact if the aid agencies and international organizations involved integrate disaster risk-reduction practices into their current program, a U.K.-based aid expert says.

Disaster risk reduction is a less expensive approach to saving more lives in disaster-prone areas, Oxfam GB’s Duncan Green writes in a column in the Guardian’s Poverty Matters blog. It also helps ensures that aid and other investments in these areas remain effective, he adds.

In his blog entry, Green suggests some ways the international community and local governments could prevent future disasters in the region as they continue their emergency crisis response there:

  • Channel some funds to water resource management initiatives.

  • Use food- or cash-for-work programs to help improve public infrastructure that are essential to the local agriculture and food production.

  • Support local traders and strengthen local delivery networks.

  • Support pastoralists by providing them with health care and other basic services.

  • Provide vaccination and other veterinary services to help prevent diseases and deaths among livestock in the region.

  • Improve collaboration with community leaders and local organizations.

  • Boost efforts to prepare for anticipated rains in the region.

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About the author

  • Ivy Mungcal

    As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.