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Community Sustainability and Disaster Mitigation
[b]Need of community sustainability and disaster mitigation [/b]

The need of community based disaster management (CBDM) required in developing country like India

·         The local population in a disasterprone area, due to exposure and proximity, are potential victims and assume most of the responsibilities in coping with effects of disasters
·         The local population has local knowledge of vulnerabilities and are repositories of any traditional coping mechanisms suited for the own environment
·         The local population responds first at times of crisis and the last remaining participants as stricken communities strive to rebuild after a disaster

The most common factors enhancing community sustainability are:

1.       The existence of a “culture of coping with crisis” and “ culture of disaster reduction”;
2.       Risk assessment process involving participation of people and incorporating their perception of vulnerability and capacity;
3.       Community and supporting  agencies sharing common motivation and ownership for the initiation and sustainability of CBDM;
4.       Genuine people’s participation within capacity-building objectives, with specific focus on sectoral groups like women, elderly, children and ethnic minorities;
5.       Well-delivered training inputs in accordance with the objectives of the project and the needs of the community for training;
6.       Wide stakeholder’s involvement and participation. Effective networking and knowledge capitalization;
7.       Accumulation of physical, technological and economic assets to reduce hazards and vulnerability; and
8.       Legislation and in-corporation of CBDM in development planning and budgeting
 The principles and practices of community based teams apply directly to community-based work for other development, environment, and sustainability endeavours. For communities tackling longer-term trends such as desertification and climate change; for communities tackling day to-day concerns such as water, food, energy, and health; and for communities tackling deeper causes of these challenges manifesting such as poverty, injustice, and inequity, the “community teams” concept can be drawn directly from disaster risk reduction work.
Dealing with crisis often develops a sense of camaraderie and trust amongst those involved. Specific disaster-related skills in first aid, building rescue, and water rescue help to save lives in the immediate aftermath of a specific event, but also foster the ability to address other challenges, to create a community which works together irrespective of the threat, and to apply collaborative, grassroots values and attitudes to any challenge.

Interest is often generated for developing community skills and community spirit by highlighting high profile events, such as landslide and earthquakes.  Maintaining that interest can be harder without specific events or when paradigms change. In contrast, ever-present day-to-day concerns could be considered by using the community teams’ talents and energy for other activities, whether that be picking up litter or conducting vulnerability assessments to inspire action for vulnerability reduction.


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