Key facts:

Hazards covered by anticipation    


Anticipation partners in country    

START Network | WFP | FAO | Zimbabwe Red Cross | Danish Red Cross | Finnish Red Cross | 510 Initiative of the Netherlands Red Cross | Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre | Meteorological Services Department | Department of Civil Protection | Ministry of Agriculture | Welthungerhilfe

Inform Risk Index    

Hazard and Exposure: 3.9

Vulnerability: 5.9

Lack of Coping Capacity: 5.9

Total: 5.1 (high risk)

Rank: 41


Photo by Hugo Nijentap / IFRC

Country profile

Zimbabwe is a low-income country with a subtropical climate. Zimbabwe’s economy and people’s livelihoods are closely linked to the agricultural sector, which accounts for 67% of total employment. Approximately 80 percent of agricultural production is rain-fed, making Zimbabwe one of the highest irrigation-dependent countries in the southern African region. In recent years, the country has faced an economic crisis marked by high inflation, which has been compounded by COVID-19’s effect on exports, tourism, and manufacturing.

Zimbabwe is particularly prone to droughts, floods, and wildfires. Hazards, such as floods, droughts and cyclones adversely impact food security and increase the likelihood of disease and pest outbreaks. Under a changing climate rainfall patterns and seasons are expected to become more variable and erratic, which makes the mostly rain-fed agricultural sector highly vulnerable to climate change.

Drought is the most common hazards, affecting the highest number of people and occurring most frequently in southern and western Zimbabwe. Drought has serious consequences for water availability for the agricultural sector as well as domestic consumption and industrial power generating. As it affects crop production it also contributes to food security. Economic losses and impacts as a result of drought last longer and be greater than the impacts of other hazards.

Floods occur most frequently in low-lying areas, particularly in southern and northern Zimbabwe. They are often associated cyclone paths. Storms that cause flooding, hail, or strong winds also damage infrastructure, housing and crops, and cause loss of life and livestock. 


Development of Forecast-based Action mechanisms addressing drought induced food insecurity in Zimbabwe

Beginning in 2020, Welthungerhilfe launched a project to develop predictive-based humanitarian aid mechanisms for food security in the event of drought in Zimbabwe. The Early Action Protocols (EAP) created as part of the project Protocols reduce the risks to the food security of vulnerable communities, prevent negative management strategies and minimize the loss and damage to drought-affected households.

Forecast Based Actions in Zimbabwe

Since 2019 the Zimbabwe Red Cross has been working, with support of the Danish Red Cross, the Finnish Red Cross, and the Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre on developing an EAP for drought.

Forecast-based Financing in Zimbabwe

Since 2019 WFP has been working with the Red Cross and the government of Zimbabwe to establish an FbF system for drought.

FAO is working to support early action for drought and COVID-19 in Zimbabwe.