Submitted by Eddie W. Jjemba | Urban Resilience Advisor | RCCC
8 Apr 2021

Unveiling low-cost anticipatory actions for cities

More than half of the world’s population lives in urban areas; that is at least 3.9 billion people! Africa and Asia have the fastest urbanization rates, but the rate of influx of people far outpaces development. This creates a service delivery gap that amplifies vulnerability of urban residents to impacts of extreme extreme weather events and other hazards.

Anticipatory mechanisms such as the Forecast based actions approach present a unique opportunity to reduce devastating impacts of extreme weather to small businesses, women, and children in the most vulnerable urban areas. As the urban FbF community of practice grows, there is a need for tools and approaches that enhance the skills and knowledge of humanitarian workers to effectively tackle the unique urban challenge.  The urban context has been described as ‘complex, diverse and dynamic’; attributes that challenge adequate/effective implementation of anticipatory humanitarian actions.

The recently launched Urban Action Kit offers possible solutions to the humanitarian community wishing to start or strengthen their urban engagement.  The Kit contains a light introduction to urban concepts, followed by a series of six modules on:

  1. Creative Communications
  2. Nature-based Solutions
  3. Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)
  4. Urban Agriculture
  5. Health & Wellbeing 
  6. Early Warning Early Action
  7. Liveable Cities

The Urban Action Kit has devoted a section to early warning and early action in cities. Using examples, it provides insight on mapping and designing effective early warning systems based on local experiences. The Kit is translated in 12 languages which caters for diverse cultures and ethnicities in cities. The Urban Action Kit was developed through a collaborative process between the IFRC, Climate Centre, GDPC, Wetland International, Resurgence among others.

The kit is accompanied by a set of videos, one for each module.

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