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Inclusive disaster risk management in Central America

In Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua, people are at constant risk of becoming victims of natural disasters. People with disabilities are particularly at risk. In partnership with ASB and CBM, we are strengthening the resilience of people with disabilities through effective and inclusive disaster risk management.

 In Central America, we strengthen the resilience of people threatened by natural disasters through training and awareness campaigns, among other things. (Photo: AWO International/ACOPEDIS)
In Central America, we strengthen the resilience of people threatened by natural disasters through training and awareness campaigns, among other things. (Photo: AWO International/ACOPEDIS)

Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, hurricanes and droughts: People in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua are at particularly high risk of the consequences of extreme natural disasters and extreme weather events. This is stated in the  World Risk Report  2020 , developed by the Alliance Development Help. The impact of such disasters basically concerns all sections of the population. However, people with disabilities are exposed to far greater risks and are suffering disproportionately from disasters. This is because it is difficult for them to evacuate themselves and reach safety in the event of an earthquake, for example. In Central America, there are also very few institutions for people with disabilities: they usually do not participate in society or community life and are included in very few state or municipal evacuation and emergency plans.

A strong network

People with disabilities need to be more integrated into humanitarian assistance and disaster preparedness activities. They need special attention and activities adapted to their needs. This is also recognized by the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030, which was adopted at the UN Third World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction.

Together with the Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund (ASB) and the Christoffel-Blindenmission (CBM), we are putting this approach into practice. To this end, each German organization coordinates the project work of one or more local partners in different countries: ASB works with the network organization FECONORI in Nicaragua, AWO International with CORDES in El Salvador as well as ACOPEDIS in Guatemala and CBM coordinates the work in Honduras with the organizations CUSO and PREPACE and in Guatemala with ASORO.

Strengthening resilience

The program aims to reduce the disaster risk of people with disabilities in the region while increasing their resilience. Through senisibilization campaigns, the topic of disaster risk reduction will be elevated to the political agendas at the municipal, regional as well as national levels. In this context, the institutions that are responsible for disaster preparedness in the respective countries will also be strengthened and educated about the need for inclusion of fellow people with disabilities at all levels.

At the same time, the five local partner organizations will work closely with selected communities. On the one hand, community-based and institutional responsiveness will be strengthened, and on the other hand, the general population will be educated about the specific needs of people with disabilities. The project will empower local organizations and develop community-based early warning systems and family emergency plans. To this aim, numerous trainings, advanced training modules and the development of disability-friendly learning methods will be developed. The program also aims to involve other civil society networks from the fields of inclusion and disaster risk reduction in the program's measures and objectives.


Project Implementing the Sendai Framework in Central America: promoting a multi-country approach to strengthening inclusion in the field of disaster risk reduction at the regional, national, and local levels.
Place/Region Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua
Partner AWO International, ASB and CBM with local partner ACOPEDIS (Guatemala) and CORDES (El Salvador)
Target group People with disabilities and their families; staff of authorities and organizations responsible for disaster prevention; local community representatives and residents of the selected communities in four countries
  • Trainings and awareness campaigns
  • Creation of inclusive emergency plans
  • Purchase of equipment 
  • Implementation of disaster preparedness exercises
  • Trainings Awareness campaigns
  • Creation of inclusive emergency plans
Duration 01.11.2020 – 31.01.2024
Budget 2 Millionen Euro
Sponsor BMZ, own contributions from ASB, AWO International and CBM

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