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Disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation

Plan International believes that children, who are among the most affected by disasters and often the least consulted, have the right to participate in disaster risk reduction (DRR) and climate change adaptation.

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Using an innovative child-centred approach, we help children develop the skills they need to keep themselves safe and to improve the disaster preparedness of their communities.

We also advocate with, and on behalf of children, at national, regional and global levels to ensure that their needs and voices are heard by decision makers.

Responding to climate change

Climate change represents a real and urgent threat to realising children’s rights in many countries around the world.

In response, Plan International is working with children and their communities to reduce climate risks and adapt to climate change through our flagship Child-Centred Climate Change Adaptation (4CA) programme, which builds awareness and empowers participants to protect themselves. The programme is currently being implemented in 12 countries across Asia and the Pacific.

Plan International is calling on governments to support and finance climate change adaptation which targets the most vulnerable, including children. We are also advocating to ensure that children and young people are meaningfully engaged in adaptation decision-making, implementation and monitoring at local and national levels.

Disaster preparedness

Disaster preparedness: Schoolchildren practice transmitting early warning messages as part of a disaster risk reduction project
Schoolchildren practice transmitting early warning messages during a disaster simulation.

Children’s education is often one of the first activities abandoned when disasters occur, yet it can play a critical role in building the resilience of children and their communities. Education is therefore a key focus for our disaster preparedness and DRR work.

We currently run a Safe Schools Global Programme in 31 disaster-prone countries across the world. Our programmes work to ensure that schools are safely built and children are educated about how they can prepare for disasters and reduce the risks. The programme aims to reach 1,531,000 children across 40 countries by 2017.

Plan International is supporting the implementation of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, an international agreement signed by governments which aims to reduce disaster risk and losses over the next 15 years. We are holding governments accountable for upholding their commitments to engage with children in reducing disaster risk and have developed a child-friendly guide to the agreement.