Drought contingency planning with pastoral communities
Many people in the drylands are witnessing climate change and its consequences on their lives and the environment. Community Managed Disaster Risk Reduction (CMDRR) and Climate Change Adaptation (CCA) share common goals of reducing vulnerability of communities and achieving sustainable development. CMDRR is an essential part of adaptation; it is the first line of defence against climate change impacts such as increased flooding or recurring droughts. Against this background, the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (IIRR) and the Vétérinaires Sans Frontières (VSF) Consortium (VSF Belgium, Germany and Switzerland) offered customised CMDRR training with pastoral communities in Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda. Emphasis is laid on contingency plans as an output of Participatory Disaster Risk Assessment (PDRA). Trained teams in the three countries then facilitated communities to carry out PDRAs and develop their own preparedness and mitigation plans. These plans are intended to form the basis for district contingency plans. Workshops were conducted with all stakeholders – including local community members – to review, refine and validate the community plans. The manual “Drought contingency planning with pastoral communities: a Community Managed Disaster Risk Reduction planning toolkit for humanitarian workers in the Horn of Africa” (2011) describes the participatory process that led to producing the refined community contingency plans.