Integration With Response and Recovery

In a supermarket in Harare, Zimbabwe, two community outreach members stand at a display promoting WaterGuard
WaterGuard was developed in Zimbabwe with USAID funding and allows users to purify water collected from wells, boreholes, or municipal sources, thereby helping prevent cholera and other waterborne illnesses.
Helen Ho/USAID

USAID funds disaster response programs to save lives, alleviate human suffering, and reduce the social and economic impact of disasters. Such programs incorporate disaster risk reduction into a broad range of interventions to not only meet immediate needs but also strengthen the ability of people to cope during future crises. By integrating disaster risk reduction into humanitarian response, early recovery, and transition programs, USAID is supporting the need to strengthen the resilience of populations vulnerable to recurrent disasters.

When we invest in programs aimed at specific risks, particularly in areas where disasters are predictable and where USAID frequently responds, we reduce cost as well as risk over time. When we place more emphasis on strengthening people’s capacity to anticipate, cope with, and recover from disasters—as an integral part of both relief and development programs—this can reduce the impact of disasters or even prevent them from happening. When we address the underlying causes of disasters, such as lack of knowledge, unplanned urbanization, and environmental degradation, we increase resilience. When we invest in government and community capacities, in public/private partnerships, or in training, we save money by empowering host countries and other stakeholders to prepare for and respond to disasters. 

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Last updated: June 14, 2013

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