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2019 was on fire.

Joe Ridley

Joe Ridley

Passionate about climate change, Jo Ridley is RedR UK Project Coordinator of the Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction pilot project.

Devastating wildfires in the Amazon and Australia, heatwaves across Europe, and heavy floods across South Asia have brought the impacts of the climate crisis to international attention.

On September 20th 4 million people took part in Global Climate Strikes to pressure governments to urgently address the crisis our planet and societies face. Yet as our recent RedTalk on sustainability in the humanitarian sector discussed, we have a long way to go ourselves. 

The humanitarian sector is on the frontlines of the climate crisis

The Red Cross has recently warned that the number of people needing humanitarian aid each year due to climate-related disasters is expected to almost double, from 108 million today to 200 million in 2050. As such, RedR UK fully supports strong and urgent action on climate crisis and efforts to reach net zero emissions globally.

RedR UK, 40 years of expertise to fight against Climate Change

From Mozambique to Myanmar, RedR UK has for 40 years worked around the world to support and build the capacity of the humanitarian sector. Now these same regions are increasingly vulnerable to the impacts of the climate crisis, which threaten to reverse years of humanitarian and development progress. The combination of high vulnerability to the impacts, and low preparedness to respond or cope, make it difficult for regions to recover after ever more frequent and severe disasters.

Typhoon Ketsana in the Philippines 2009 (c)Erik de Castro/Reuters

A successful pilot project in the Philippines

It is this combination of vulnerability and low resilience that RedR UKs Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction project aims to address. Comprising of a 4-day training course, individual coaching, and the KnowledgePoint service our project is designed to give participants knowledge and skills on climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction but also importantly, how to advocate for these subjects and increased climate action to their organisations, partners and beneficiaries, increasing the impact of our work. Only by advocating for sector-wide change will we be able to build a better, environmentally sustainable world and sector.

Save the Children, the Philippines Red Cross, Plan International, local governement units...

The pilot project focused on the Philippines, which is the 71st most vulnerable, and 61st least prepared country in the world to the impact of the climate crisis. With a vast coastline, thousands of islands and most major cities on the coast, 81% of the population, around 85 million people, live and work in areas vulnerable to extreme weather events such as typhoons and flooding. RedR UK delivered training courses in Metro Manila and Cebu City to staff from a variety of humanitarian, local government and private sector organisations involved in humanitarian response.

“I have a better understanding now of the overlapses between Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation which is basically reducing vulnerability and enhancing resiliency." Enan Melencio, Country Programme Manager for Disaster Resilience, Plan International Philippines.

The project has been a success, and RedR UK aims to roll-out the project to other countries over the next year, thanks to our partner AXA XL and our supporters. If you are interested, get in touch with us!