10 things you didn’t know about disasters and emergencies

Y Care International’s top ten facts that you may not know about emergencies and disaster risk reduction.

One of the flooded family’s helped through Y Care International and Cambodia YMCA emergency response in Banteay Meanchey Province, Cambodia. Photo: Cambodia YMCA

One of the flooded family’s supported through Cambodia YMCA’s emergency response in Banteay Meanchey Province.

1. More than 38 million lives were disrupted by disasters in 2013

At last count, nearly 16,000 people were killed and more than 38 million lives were disrupted by disasters in 2013. Last year we Y Care International provided life-saving support to people affected by flooding in Cambodia and Sri Lanka, an escalating crisis in Syria, and the devastating typhoon in the Philippines.

2. Weather-related disasters have tripled in the last 30 years

The incidence of disasters from natural hazards is increasing in every region of the world with reported weather-related disasters having tripled in 30 years. The numbers of people exposed to floods and tropical cyclones have doubled and tripled respectively since 1970.

3. Every $1 spent on disaster preparedness saves $7 in disaster aftermath

It makes economic sense to invest in disaster risk reduction (DRR) as #ActNowSaveLater, the UN campaign clearly points out in the video below:

4. For every $160,000 dedicated to disaster response, only $1 is invested in Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR)

An analysis of 12 low-income countries over a 20-year period revealed $5.6 billion was spent on disaster response, compared with less than $10 million each for disaster risk reduction. This is equivalent to $160,000 dedicated to response for every $1 invested in reducing risk.

Text SYRI01 now with your donation amount to 70070. Pfhoto: Adam Leach/YCI

Text SYRI01 now with your donation amount to 70070.

5. Conflict in Syria has pushed back human development achievements by 35 years… 

…leaving more than 50 percent of the population (12.6 million people) living in poverty, 9.3 million in need of humanitarian and development assistance and 6.5 million displaced from their homes*.  The crisis is not over, neither is Y Care International’s emergency appeal.

6. Right now, a Syrian becomes a refugee every 15 seconds

That’s 5,000 every day with over half of them being children*. Three quarters of registered refugees are living with host families and communities, this influx of people is placing crippling pressure on the infrastructure and economies of the host countries. Y Care International’s CEO Adam Leach saw what life is like in Za’atari refugee camp, Jordan in 2013, and blogged about his experience in the ‘Middle East Diaries‘.

A young trainee learns how to grow plants to increase resilience to future disasters. Photo: Rehana Merali/YCI

A young trainee learns how to grow plants to increase resilience to future disasters.

7. In Madagascar there have been 35 cyclone disasters over the last 20 years…

…which affected nearly five million people worsening poverty and food insecurity. They generally hit the island nation between November and March but young people are reducing the risk of these disasters with Madagascar YMCA.

8. Out of 3,886 global disasters during 1980-2012, 45% were in Asia-Pacific

Southeast Asia is one of  the regions most affected by disasters, and it has seen the largest increase in disasters over the past decade. We support the Asia Pacific Alliance of YMCAs on emergency response, disaster preparedness and engaging young people in disaster risk reduction.

Families dependent on fishing are being supported with engine boats and other necessary accessories for fishing because of your support. Photo: Pablito Tabucol/Philippines YMCA

Fishermen who lost their boats and tools have been provided with the necessary items to enable them to start fishing again.

9. During typhoon season around 20 storms hit the Philippines every year

The southwest monsoon lasts from June to September but typhoons often make landfall long after the rainy season has ended. As part of our emergency response after typhoon Haiyan we’re supporting young people and their families to rebuild their lives so that they are more resilient to future disasters.

10. Since 2012 Y Care International has supported 17 YMCAs around the world on Disaster Risk Reduction and Emergency response…

…through activities such as emergency response, establishing disaster volunteer groups, multi-country DRR workshops, carrying out research, supporting young farmers to be more resilient to droughts and floods, and reaching remote communities with training trucks – you name it and we’ve probably done it! Read all out about our Emergencies and DRR work here.

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