Report: Preparing the ground for better dialogue, better information, better action: learning from preparedness

CDAC Network and World Vision UK
In humanitarian crises, people need the right information, at the right time and in the right language, to make potentially life-saving decisions.  In recent years, humanitarians have established specialist working groups or inter-agency initiatives with a specific focus on communication with affected communities. The Disasters and Emergencies Preparedness Programme (DEPP) and CDAC, funded by the UK Department for International Development, looked at building preparedness capacity among humanitarian practitioners to strengthen national preparedness capacity for communication and community engagement while also building the operational response capacity. This report distills the good practice and learning gleaned from the 3-years of implementation in Bangladesh, South Sudan, and the Philippines, on methods for engaging communities and collaborative platforms for working toward this end. It also highlights tools and resources for communicating with communities that have been developed along the way.

Shongjog, the working group in Bangladesh has blazed a trail for others to follow by embedding communication and community engagement in the Rohingya refugee response and recent floods in a way that has never been seen before. The group has successfully launched vital resources like the message library and built a network of radio journalists and volunteers ready to issue life-saving information to communities when needed. The working group in the Philippines is also pioneering high standards in communication and community engagement. One of the group’s successes is the innovative partnership it formed with the private sector. Consequently, humanitarian actors are now participating in response simulation exercises with private sector actors. South Sudan has proved to be more of a test environment than an established working groups because of the fragile ongoing security situation and related coordination challenges.

For the full report, see here.