Responding to Disasters

Tearfund and its partners respond to disasters of every scale, from small-disasters which can devastate a few households or communities (such as local floods and landslides), to large-scale protracted crises which affect millions (such as the crisis caused by the conflict in Yemen).

Tearfund works to international standards with integrity and transparency. The design and delivery of emergency response should be as locally led as possible - from the design through to the measurement of performance.  Identifying and targeting the most vulnerable, irrespective of ethnicity and religion is vital, and Tearfund focuses its needs assessment resources to be inclusive of marginalised groups.  

We work with other organisations as part of networks and alliances because we believe that working collaboratively with others enables us to be more effective and efficient in our response.  The information our partners gather is sometimes the only source of data on the needs of that community - whether that be from the local church or via coordinated UN needs assessment. Information sharing and knowledge management ensures that the support is targeted to the right people at the right time.

resources on responding to disasters

Project Cycle Management

Effective project management is crucial in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. The resources below are our most popular and helpful on this topic.

ROOTS 5 – Project Cycle Management (PDF 698 KB)
Tearfund has developed a range of tools and guidelines based around the project cycle, to ensure all aspects of projects are considered when responding to disasters.
This resource is also available in French (PDF 868 KB), Spanish (PDF 832 KB), Portuguese (PDF 863 KB), Arabic (PDF 646 KB), Bangla (8.6 MB) and Russian (PDF 1 MB).

Disaster Management Good Practice Guide (PDF 565 KB)
This is a simple and user-friendly guide for practitioners in the field, with practical exercises and examples of the most common elements of project management.

Needs Assessment in Emergencies

Assessments help to identify the most appropriate response options to an emergency and what added value Tearfund can bring to an emergency response. Tearfund’s own approaches and resources include:

Rapid Fragility Assessments (Excel 227 KB)
Tearfund uses these assessments to consider fragility across five dimensions: security; social; political; economic, and environmental. Fragility looks at the combination of risk and capacity to cope with those risks should they become reality. Other good practise sources can be found below:

Quality Standards

Tearfund has identified a set of corporate Quality Standards to help us work to the highest possible standards with integrity and transparency. They bring together all the relevant external and internal accountability and quality standards, codes, guidelines and principles committed to by Tearfund.

Tearfund’s Quality Standards

Core Humanitarian Standard (CHS)
CHS Alliance brings together People in Aid and the Humanitarian Accountability Partnership. It is one of the largest and most influential networks of organisations committed to improving humanitarian and development work through the application of standards.

The Sphere Handbook, Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Humanitarian Response is an internationally recognised set of common principles and universal minimum standards in life-saving areas of humanitarian response.

Supporting the Most Vulnerable

CBM - The Overseas Disability Charity
CBM is a Christian disability and development organisation which provides relief and recovery for people living with or at risk of disability, at times of crisis.

Humanitarian Hands on Tool (HHOT)
This is a mobile app which CBM have designed to help people with disabilities access life-saving relief services during emergencies.

Children in Emergencies Toolkit
This toolkit was produced by Viva in partnership with Tearfund Ireland, Transform Aid International, Food for the Hungry and World Relief. It can be used to make sure you are addressing the most important needs of children, as well as ensuring responses in other sectors are keeping children safe.

Child Protection in Emergencies - Workshop Manual
This workshop took place in Bangladesh in early 2019 and provided a forum for local and international partners to participate in training based on Viva’s Children in Emergencies Toolkit.

Child Protection Self-Assessment (PDF 504 KB)
This self-assessment can be used alongside the Children in Emergencies toolkit.

Communicating with Disaster affected Communities (CDAC)
This network seeks to improve two-way communication between aid actors and disaster affected populations.

Responding to disasters - Useful websites and networks

In this document (PDF 77 KB) you will find a list of alliances and networks that Tearfund works with as well as a list of useful websites to help you in your response to disasters.