Young People & Disaster Risk Reduction

Following the earthquake in Nepal and the important role that Restless Development is playing in the emergency response, Restless Development’s Policy and Research Coordinator Sarah Haynes provides here a snapshot of a wider policy discussion currently taking place on young people and disaster risk.

The conversation is focused around the UN World conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, which took place in Sendai Japan, March 2015. This is not a policy process that Restless Development is currently engaged in globally, but it is of course very relevant to what we are doing in Nepal.

So what has happened so far? As one of the UN recognised ‘global constituencies’, the Major Group of Children and Youth (MGCY), pulled together a working group of regionally representative young people around the world, to convene in Sendai with decision-makers for two purposes:

  1. To ensure young people were at the table during discussions and shaping the conversations
  2. So the role of young people is recognised in preventing and responding to disasters.

The outcome was the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, 2015-2030, a global agreement and commitment which will shape the way countries plan for and respond to disasters for the next fifteen years. It identifies four priority areas for action: Understanding disaster risk , strengthening disaster risk governance, Investing in disaster risk reduction for resilience, Enhancing disaster preparedness, and “Build Back Better” in recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction.

Sarah Haynes is Policy and Research Coordinator for Restless Development, after working in policy at the European Women’s Lobby, and Women for Women International. Sarah leads our policy work for the post-2015 agenda, focussed on governance and participation. Outside of work you’ll find her pottering around the garden or with her head in a book collecting inspiring quotes and ideas.

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