IFRC


International Seminar on Urban Disaster Risk Reduction and Management ends with Tehran Call for Action

Published: 8 May 2015 9:27 CET

By Soraya Dali-Balta, IFRC

After four days of intense discussions and consultations hosted by the Red Crescent Society of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the participants at the International Seminar on Urban Disaster Risk Reduction and Management concluded the talks with the Tehran Call for Action to strengthen support for disaster management and risk reduction programmes and initiatives in different urban settings around the world.

Between 4 and 7 May, more than 100 disaster management and risk reduction experts from Red Cross and Red Crescent societies around the world, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), United Nations agencies, governmental bodies and research centres gathered in Tehran and held discussions over several topics focusing on disaster risk reduction and management in urban areas.

The Tehran Call for Action was reached after recognising the “rapid rise in unplanned and unmanaged urbanization compounded with other underlying risk factors such as migration, the environmental degradation, the weak urban planning, the lack of updated building codes and challenges in their enforcement, in addition to economic and social factors which are posing a growing threat to people’s lives, livelihoods and economic growth and acknowledging that these factors will impact the most vulnerable people and communities that Red Cross and Red Crescent  strive to serve.”

In this respect, the conferees pledged in the Tehran Call for Action to rise to the increased challenges of urban disaster risks around the world through enhancing the institutional and operational capacities of the IFRC and its member Red Cross and Red Crescent societies in what relates to urban disaster risk reduction and management. They also called for encouraging all components of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement to prioritise and invest in knowledge and resources to support urban disaster risk reduction and management, relying to achieve this on innovative, scientific, and technological means on national, regional and international levels.

The participating urban disaster risk reduction and management experts also called for coordinating with governmental bodies and other stakeholders, including UN agencies, academic professionals, civil society organisations, the private sector and media bodies to come up with a joint collaborative work to build community resilience in cities and urban areas, in line with relevant international frameworks such as the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030 and the UNISDR Resilient Cities campaign.

An agreement was also reached on providing risk reduction and resilience building support in more than 50 cities by the year 2020. Moreover, the Tehran Call for action urged adopting The Road to Urban Resilience: The IFRC’s Perspective, as risk reduction and strengthening resilience are critical elements in promoting sustainable development and are called for to be part of the international development agenda post 2015, in line with the Millennium Development Goals. The participants also recommended publishing Building Urban Resilience: A Guide for National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies Engagement and Planning, which will be a valuable resource covering the discussions and the conclusions held at the International Seminar on Urban Disaster Risk Reduction and Management.

The landmark seminar was hosted by the Red Crescent Society of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the Iranian capital of Tehran, and it was the first international-level event held in the Middle East and North Africa region to map the road for urban disaster risk reduction and management efforts around the world.  

 




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