Reflecting on the journey: a farewell message from the head of the Anticipation Hub

Dear colleagues, partners and friends of anticipatory action,

After three years of being part of the Anticipation Hub´s incredible experience, I finally arrived on my last day in my role as head. It has been a privilege to help create and eventually lead an initiative that embodies what I believe in: the value of shared ownership, diversity, inclusion, creativity and accountability. I leave with a heart full of gratitude for the journey we shared and I am proud of our collective achievements.

The Anticipation Hub has become a permanent space that brings together scientists, practitioners, and policymakers from across disciplines and sectors with thanks to the support of our 128 partner organizations representing the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement, the UN, NGOs, government, think tanks, academia and other network initiatives. Recently, the Anticipation Hub conducted a data-collection exercise to report on its strategic priorities.

The following are the milestones:

Strategic priority 1: Innovation, learning and exchange - the Global and Regional Dialogue Platforms on Anticipatory Humanitarian Action

Beginning with dozens of experts and early pioneers who met in 2015, the dialogue platforms are now bringing together thousands of people from more than 140 countries annually to learn and share best practices. Beyond the numbers, the dialogue platforms and the Anticipation Hub's other learning activities and events are also appreciated by its community, providing them with the space to connect and learn from each other in a open, creative, inclusive and egalitarian way.

Supported by more than 600 members, our working groups are advancing knowledge in health, risk financing, locally led anticipatory action, Earth observation, conflict, multi-risk approaches, and protection, gender and inclusion. They jointly organize learning activities, support research and develop tools. A fast-growing initiative, the Future Leaders Network on Early Warning and Early Action continues to connect, inspire and empower early-career professionals from all over the world.

Strategic priority 2: Guidance and support - the Global Overview reports

Anticipatory Action in 2022: A Global Overview was launched as the first in a series of annual reports that will document how the anticipatory action sector is developing over time. This first edition, which reported on activities during 2022, drew on desk research conducted to map anticipatory action frameworks and activations worldwide. This report presented – for the first time – the current global scale and impact of anticipatory action. It discussed how the scope of this approach expanded in 2022 – in terms of the hazards to which it is applied, the different triggers in place, and the range of anticipatory actions being implemented. It also set out the steps needed for this expansion to continue in the future. Together with the growing library of knowledge and learning resources offered throught the Anticipation Hub´s website, which is currently being used by about 2,800 people per month, we continue to strive to become the one-stop shop for the anticipatory action community.

Strategic priority 3: Policy and advocacy - informing global and regional processes

In 2022, the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement's Council of Delegates adopted a resolution ('Strengthening anticipatory action in the Movement: Our way forward') in which it commits to scale up anticipatory action. The resolution will allow the Movement to better assist people in vulnerable situations, while at the same time maintaining and building on its role as a champion in this area. And, under the presidency of Germany, the Anticipation Hub supported the Anticipatory Action Task Force in drafting a policy brief to inform the development of the work of foreign ministers to launch the Statement on Strengthening Humanitarian Assistance. The outcome of both efforts led to a call for support for the Anticipation Hub as an important initiative to support learning, coordination and partnerships.

More recently, interested Grand Bargain signatories agreed to launch a caucus, and committed to resolve existing barriers for scaling up anticipatory action as part of the Grand Bargain 3.0 reiteration. The work of the caucus is supported by the Anticipation Hub, which has been given a role as a technical advisor.

At the regional level, the Anticipation Hub is proud to support the development of IGAD´s Anticipatory Action Regional Roadmap, and CEPREDENAC's Declaration which signalled 2024 as the year of anticipatory action in Central America. These efforts are fundamental to strengthening the work of national governments in East Africa and Central America to integrate anticipatory action into policies, plans and frameworks for disaster risk management and climate change adaptation.

From this year, the Anticipation Hub team will continue to work on expanding the reach and depth of its activities and products with our “more, better, together” approach. I am particularly excited about the anticipatory action learning module, which will be rolled out this year. Building on current efforts and complementing existing training materials developed by governmental organizations, the UN and NGOs, this training course will be offered to national government agencies, with a focus on those working on disaster risk management and hydrometeorological services. We´re grateful for Servicio Meteorológico Nacional Argentina, ICPAC, ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on Disaster Management, UKMO, WMO and CREWS Initiative for being early supporters and members of the learning reference group and offering insights and guidance to assure that the learning module wlll be fit for purpose.

While we celebrate progress, we are acutely aware that much more 'can' and 'must' be done to tackle the rising needs and challenges. I believe that we can continue to reach new heights by way of reimagination and critical deconstruction of the status quo. By always honestly asking ourselves not only what 'I' can do, or what my organization can do, but what we can create together to protect more people at risk. With humility, openness and collaboration, the possibilities are endless.

To my German Red Cross, Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre and IFRC dream team: thank you for your unwavering commitment and tireless efforts. It has been a privilege to work with such talented, creative and caring individuals. My gratitude to our partners, donors and collaborators whose insights, resources and networks have enriched our work immeasurably.

I am filled with hope and optimism for the future of the Anticipation Hub and leaving you with a borrowed quote: "The best way to predict the future is to create it." Together, we have forged lasting relationships built on trust and a shared vision to drive change. I have no doubt that this remarkable community will continue to thrive and evolve in the years to come.

Looking forward to reconnecting in the next chapter! You can find my new contact information below.

With deepest gratitude and warmest regards,