Nepal is highly vulnerable to natural disasters, which disproportionately affect already marginalized and vulnerable populations, including women, girls, older people, and people with disabilities. Women and girls consistently face higher mortality rates during disasters, and are at greater risk of violence, exploitation and abuse, unwanted pregnancy, unsafe abortion, and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, due to the collapse of social and structural support systems. Emergency preparedness is essential for ensuring that lifesaving Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) services are included in humanitarian response. However, people with disabilities and older people are consistently left out of assessments and preparedness planning, and their unique needs and priorities go unaddressed in crises response.
Numerous tools have been developed by various humanitarian agencies to assess risks and prepare for crises. However, there is a dearth of resources that engage communities in identifying and leveraging their existing capacities in preparedness. In response to this gap, WRC has developed community capacity and needs assessment tools and piloted the Community Preparedness for SRH and Gender curriculum to support communities to work together to identity their SRH needs and resources, and develop action plans to prepare for emergencies, protect vulnerable community members, and ensure that SRH services are included in crisis response.
In this project, FPAN, NDWA, SCCS, and WRC will use our research findings to strengthen accessibility in inclusion of older people and people with disabilities in these tools and develop recommendations and guidance to ensure that emergency preparedness activities at the community level are accessible for people with disabilities and older people, and inclusive of their needs, priorities, and resources
Partners will publish reports and advocacy briefs, and will leverage their networks, conferences, workshops with key decision makers in Nepal, and webinars to disseminate the research findings, community preparedness tools, and recommendations.
Ultimately, partners will raise awareness of the unique SRH and gender needs and priorities of older people and people with disabilities in Nepal and of the importance of their participation in emergency preparedness, and ensure that actors across sectors have actionable recommendations for organizing inclusive, accessible emergency preparedness activities at the community level.
Learn more about WRC's participatory research in NepalView
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