Advocacy and Disasters

Strategic advocacy aimed at the local, national and international decision-makers is critical when responding to disaster risk. It can increase funding, see policies being led locally and enable policy makers to take a holistic approach to disaster risk reduction (DRR), conflict prevention, climate change adaptation and development. At Tearfund, our work in advocacy also includes advocating for the role of faith leaders in disaster preparedness and response to be recognised. 

Commitments like these are viewed in siloes:

A joined up, coherent approach is urgent and vital if we want to see long lasting change. Research shows that investing in disaster risk reduction (DRR) prior to disasters saves lives, reduces losses, and is far more cost effective than funding response after disasters.


Why advocate for DRR front coverWhy advocate for Disaster Risk Reduction? (PDF 175 KB)
This booklet is aimed at organisations which are already involved in disaster risk reduction (DRR) but which have not yet considered an advocacy approach to DRR. It sets out why governments should be held accountable for DRR, and the role of business and civil society.

Turning practice into policy front coverTurning practice into policy: linking good community-based Disaster Risk Management with government policy and practice (PDF 939 KB)
This is a resource for DRR practitioners wanting to implement robust community Disaster Risk Management programmes and ensure that this good practice is replicated and scaled up by their governments. 

Advocacy toolkit front coverAdvocacy Toolkit 
This toolkit provides an introductory and comprehensive guide to the theory and practice of advocacy. Each section includes teaching notes, tools and training exercises.

National Level examples of advocacy on DRR and Emergencies

Philippines: strengthening the role of local government
Following Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, as part of Tearfund’s commitment on developing local capacity, Tearfund worked with the Mayor of Cadiz to develop a city wide Disaster Risk Management Plan.

Useful Websites

Global Network for Disaster Reduction
Over 10 years ago Tearfund helped launch this global civil society movement, which now has a membership of over 800 different organisations from over 100 different countries.  Tearfund works closely with GNDR to support national and regional level advocacy initiatives, as well as support capacity development and sharing learning amongst members.

International Council of Voluntary Agencies
ICVA is a global network of non-governmental organisations whose mission is to make humanitarian action more principled and effective by working collectively and independently to influence policy and practice. Their work has a strong focus on following up from the World Humanitarian Summit.  


Applying Cost Benefit Analysis at a Community Level: A review of its use for community based climate and disaster risk management
This report, produced jointly with Oxfam GB, reviews 23 studies by a wide range of agencies that have applied cost benefit analysis (CBA) to community-based disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation projects.
Annex A containing the case studies
Annex B applying cost benefit methodologies at community level.

Investing in communities: the benefits and costs of building resilience for food security in Malawi (PDF 175 KB)
This report shows the drought risk reduction activities of a Tearfund partner in northern Malawi were found to have a cost–benefit ratio of at least 1:24.
Summary Poster of key findings of the report

Cost-Benefit Analysis for community-based Climate and Disaster Risk Management
This report, produced jointly with Oxfam America, reviews and compares 13 cost–benefit analyses of climate and DRR projects.

Disaster preparedness in India: a Cost-Benefit Analysis
This paper, published by Humanitarian Practice Network (HPN), is based on field work in Bihar and Andhra Pradesh states in India with Tearfund partners Discipleship Centre and EFICOR. It highlights the economic benefit of investing in activities that reduce people's vulnerability to floods and droughts.