Viet Nam Red Cross Society launches the World Disasters Report 2014

تم النشر: 17 أكتوبر 2014 15:29 CET

By Kate Roux and Ly Nguyen, IFRC

In 2013, Viet Nam witnessed 14 flood and storm events – the largest number over a given year in the past decade – with 4.13 million people affected. By comparison, in 2006 there were eight flood and storm events with approximately 2 million affected.

Although the figures increased significantly, early warning mechanisms and risk reduction efforts have helped save more lives in Viet Nam, through investment by the government and humanitarian partners such as the Red Cross. The launch of the World Disasters Report 2014 in Hanoi on 16 October, was another effort made by the Viet Nam Red Cross Society with support from the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

“The World Disasters Report this year provides us with a more comprehensive understanding of disaster risk reduction which enables greater coordination at home and abroad, including with Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement partners,” said the President of Viet Nam Red Cross, Nguyen Hai Duong. “As the Report points out, understanding local attitudes and beliefs is integral to organizations bringing about sustainable behavioral change.

Contributions on the topic of culture and risk were made by  representatives from the Centre for Sustainable Rural Development, the World Bank Group and Development Workshop France (DWF). Le Duc Nam, former deputy director of the Directorate of Water Resources, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, linked the cultural focus of the Report with the elderly, in recognition of International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction 2014.

Together with the Viet Nam Disaster Management Centre, the Red Cross is currently working with practitioners to enhance knowledge on how cultural factors affect the behavior of communities when they face the risk to disasters.

“The Report highlights how culture can both increase and decrease vulnerability and affect disaster response and recovery programming,” said Michael Annear, IFRC representative for Viet Nam. “The issue is relevant in this part of Southeast Asia, and taking the opportunity to openly discuss the issues today helps us remain progressive in our current programming.”

Madhu Raghunath from the World Bank also highlighted various risk reduction projects being implementing with a cultural focus, such as a campaign that educates communities on disasters through traditional theater and dance performance. Guillaume Chantry from DWF demonstrated how community participation in post-disaster shelter reconstruction is not only inclusive, but creates culturally appropriate housing options.

For more information on the WDR launch in Viet Nam or the Viet Nam Red Cross please contact the IFRC country representative Michael Annear or communications officer Ly Nguyen.