Knowledge for Life - Ethiopia Celebrates International Day of Disaster Risk ReductionOct 13, 2015
Ethiopia celebrated the 2015 International Day of Disaster Risk Reduction (IDDRR) under the global theme Knowledge for Life with the government stating its commitment for expanding the set of policy guidelines to allow for enhanced stakeholder engagement on the ground.
The event acknowledged the importance of integrating local communities’ knowledge and practice into DRM efforts. Both experts and community leaders were present to share their experiences. This included Qallicha Q’anchero, an elder astrologer from the Borena area in southern Ethiopia, who has been providing traditional advice to the community for the past 47 years having learnt the skills from his father once he reached 18.
Qallicha has been a member of the area’s DRR committee since five years ago and he was attending this year’s IDDRR celebrations to present alongside Halake Dida Gobessa, an anthropologist and DRM expert.
“The community is the foundation and the strongest pillar in addressing disasters as they are at the forefront of managing and tackling disasters before any outside support reaches them,” highlighted State Minister Wonderad Mandafro at the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resource.
Ethiopia’s celebration of the IDDRR comes at a time when the country has announced that 8.2 million people will be in need for relief assistance due to the El-Niño-driven crisis with calls going out for an additional US$164million that is urgently needed to address Ethiopia’s increased food and non-food needs for the rest of 2015.
“As we reflect and share knowledge, let us do so with a clear recognition that our interventions must be inclusive and focused on building resilience to shocks as the cornerstone for ensuring sustainable development,” noted acting UN Resident Coordinator Mr. George Okutho.
Ethiopia's IDDR event was organised by the government in collaboration with UNDP, UNICEF, and WFP as well as other partners.