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L3R 8G6

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Markham, Ontario
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L3R 8G6

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How CCFC is helping reduce disaster risk in Ethiopia

On International Day of Disaster Reduction, see how Ethiopians are learning to avoid a disaster, following the country’s worst drought in 50 years

By Semereta Sewasew, communications manager, Ethiopia

Live to tell the story. That’s the message the United Nations is sending on this 27th annual International Day for Disaster Reduction.

“Despite many successes, there are still far too many lives being lost in predictable events because of failures to deploy early warning systems, learn lessons from past events and grasp the growing threat of climate change and its impact on extreme weather,” explained Robert Glasser, the UN secretary general’s special representative for disaster risk reduction.

Christian Children’s Fund of Canada is doing its part to reduce disaster risk. In fact, Ethiopia is still recovering from a severe drought, which has impacted more than 10-million people. Learn what’s being done in the African nation to reduce the risk of another natural disaster.

Committees are being trained in emergency planning

  • In 2015, representatives from 10 communities in Langano and Soddo participated in emergency-preparedness training. For example, attendees learned that an increase in wind and/or temperature and late rainfall as well as government-assessment reports on pre- and post-harvest can provide foresight about extreme weather ahead.

Communities are learning how to improve their resilience

  • In Langano, 256 disadvantaged farmers were gifted with goats. The hardy animals reduce a farmer’s vulnerability to the impact of disaster, especially since the majority of the recipients were involved in a goat-management orientation.

People are learning to build income through environmental consciousness

  • More than 500 community members in Arsi Negelle district learned to reduce their vulnerability to disaster by saving resources such as seeds for planting and sharing seeds among the community.
  • In Arsi Negelle district, two sections of land were fenced off to rehabilitate vegetation by protecting the soil, preventing animal grazing and reducing human settlement and tree cutting.

Farmers are benefiting from drought-resistant seeds

  • In Soddo, 500 disadvantaged farmers received drought-resistant Taro-root seeds
  • In Soddo, 155 farmers were trained in post-harvest management and improved agricultural technologies so they can maximize productivity within a small plot of land.
  • In nine kebeles (neighbourhoods) of Arsi Negele district, 864 farmers were given short-season and drought-resistant seeds, such as wheat and haricot bean.

Schools and health posts are preserving water

  • In the Langano area, seven schools and one health post have been outfitted with roof-harvest structures to collect rainwater for handwashing as well as filling toilets and cleaning toilets.