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Dealing with disasters

WaterAid is not a disaster relief organisation so how do we deal with them when they happen in the communities where we work?

In the aftermath of a disaster, there is often a shortage of clean water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene practices. Even if there had previously been good facilities, an earthquake or a flood can destroy or damage them beyond use.

Water and sanitation are critical determinants for survival in the initial stages of all disasters as people are generally much more susceptible to illness and death from water- and sanitation-related diseases.

WaterAid isn’t a disaster relief organisation but our country teams have developed a clear framework for action to prepare for and deal with disasters in the areas where we work. Our focus is two-fold:

  1. To make sure our work reduces the vulnerability of communities and increases their resilience to disasters: for instance, this could be technological features such as raised latrines in flood-prone areas or helping create networks of support for pump mechanics.
  2. To work with humanitarian organisations to support the transition from emergency reponse to longer-term development.

WaterAid’s Disasters framework is being implemented by our teams across the world.

Read a summary of the framework and download the framework itself >