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Livelihood Development in Post Disaster Situations
Practical Action proposes a post-disaster livelihood development programme that focuses on long term economic development of the affected communities. Practical Action has been involved in promoting a disaster resistance sustainable livelihood (DRSL) development approach which is a result of the post disaster livelihood development work in South Asia. The DRSL framework focuses on securing what has remained of the asset base in a post disaster situation and generating lost assets in a sustainable manner which is fundamental to livelihood rebuilding of affected communities. A community owned rural business collective model has been suggested as a way of increasing access to asset bases that have been lost by the disaster.
Networking of rural producers Appropriate technological solutions for rural producers Knowledge products Capacity development of communities Responsive policy
help co-ordinate distribution of resources and avoid duplication. The most important factor here is the possibility to access infrastructure facilities such as equipment, machinery, telecommunication etc. under the principles of Business Development Service provisions.
Practical Action’s approach includes
Damage assessments after any type of disaster would be carried out by most institutions who are involved in post disaster rebuilding activities and as a result, the affected communities have to fill several questionnaires during the first few months. In carrying out damage assessment practical action advocates the participaties of all stake holders and emphasise the need for co-ordination among the development organization. The compiled data has to be placed at district level co-ordination centres, in order to ensure easy access to other stakeholders. Damage assessments should cover at least the key areas of rebuilding; damages on lives, housing, livelihoods, and other infrastructure. Livelihood development in a post disaster situations varies significantly in comparison to livelihood development approaches used in a non disaster or “normal” situation. In disaster situations, the affected communities share common issues as they have faced a disaster together. However such broad categorization or uses of a blanket approach in designing & implementing development programs. This is not the best approach since diverse individual livelihood activities tend to be neglected. While the damage assessment data is collected from common databases, it is also important to collect individualised first hand information related to the previous livelihood activities of the communities.
Rural business incubator
Pooling outside resources
A community owned Rural Business collective (RBC) needs to be physically located within the affected areas that focus on the identification, facilitation and improvement of the economic development initiatives within the vicinity. This facility will help to provide appropriate technologies that are essential for livelihoods of communities and concurrently this will help to network the small/micro business initiatives effectively. The community owned rural business incubators can therefore link to outside sources for resources, as it will
Contact: Resource Desk
No 5, Lionel Edirisinghe Mw, Colombo 5, Sri Lanka. T +94 (11) 2829412 F +94 (11) 2856188 W www.practicalaction.org www.janathakshan.net E firstname.lastname@example.org
Make them aware of the proposed interventions and get their assistance. The community members who show entrepreneurial qualities need to be categorised according to their previous business experience and willingness to start a business. Business Idea Generation for selected beneficiaries As noted in the “Introduction” leaflet. Hence. The basic requirements need to be fulfilled first and victims need to be settled at least temporary shelters. with their participation. In a post disaster context victims’ mindset tends to be insecure motiveless and dependent on donations for survival. Enterprise based livelihood development activities should be introduced to the members who show high level entrepreneurial qualities. This message has to be very clear from the beginning. and persons who had not previously conducted business but need to start a business as their breadwinner was lost or disabled. Even though livelihood development is an urgent need of the rebuilding process the livelihood rebuilding activities should not start soon after the catastrophe. while skills development for employment through vocational training should be given to those with little interest in entrepreneurship. a common programme on Business Idea Generation coupled with positive thinking and entrepreneurial culture is suggested here. those who conducted business previously and need to change it. However. although with good intentions. The distribution of money & essential goods has led to a situation of dependency on handouts by the affected communities. Make the public aware that you are not “Providing free donations”. It is important to motivate them and help them to change their way of thinking. This program will help to screen the requirements of the affected communities in order to provide customised service to the affected communities.Process guideline activities preferably should include all. organisations that are involved in economic development activities must understand the importance of in collaboration with the formal system as outlined below. most organisations tend to directly work with communities and later inform officials about their work. Under normal conditions it can only focus on the entrepreneurial qualities of the community members where as in post-disaster livelihood development Practical Action Livelihood development in post disaster situations Process guideline 2 . Organise common awareness meetings in public places. There are several significant categories which could be identified during this process eg: victims who conducted businesses prior to the disaster and are willing to continue the same. The public can be made aware about the meetings by using banners and posters. and that you intend to help economic development of affected communities. Individuals should be categorised according to the level of their entrepreneurial qualities. Entry strategy to a community varies from community to community. Visit government officials within the area. Finding the best entry strategy to the community Once damage assessment data is collected. Prior to making livelihood development interventions. (For more details refer Technical Brief on BIG) Selection of beneficiaries Selection of beneficiaries for enterprise development activities under post disaster situations is different to how it happens under normal conditions. the next step is to plan for an intervention. According to our experience.
Communities affected by disasters living in asset-fewer environments generally receive basic infrastructures to start livelihoods related activities through the RBC. Capacity development of the RBC is the prime task of the facilitating institutes in this development process. A manager will be appointed for collective and initially he will be paid by the organization implementing the RBC. conduct training programs. Marketing feasibility Technical feasibility Financial feasibility Production feasibility Disaster risk analysis The benefits of this approach Generate strong relations with the community Allow participants to contribute their ideas openly and freely Results in a well-informed and comprehensive picture of the current situation. It is important for the manager to guide then incubates members to develop their businesses. Participatory value chain analysis Participatory business planning The business planning process should be organised in a participatory manner. The business planning should cover the following areas.Process guideline Setting up Rural Business Incubation Centres Rural Business collective is considered a catalytic institution for rural economic development. networking the enterprises and pool outside resources. Marketing plan Production plan Financial plan Organisational management plan Capacity development plan Financial plan Monitoring plan Action Plan Disaster preparedness plan The Business incubation process The rural business collectives will provide facilities to start businesses in affected areas. Articulation of individual. The Manager of the too will be selected from the community and he/she should have basic educational qualifications and show commitment to carryout such activities. The RBC needs to analyse the training needs of the communities. Feasibility analysis The feasibility of the proposals produced by the community members need to be analysed carefully. The members of the collective have to elect a group of trustees to manage the RBC. This has to be done on an individual basis in RBCs. The organisations facilitating the implementation RBCs need to develop the capacities of the managers of the collective to face those challenges. organise business incubation activities. create market linkages. Feasibility of the proposed projects needs to cover the following areas. Practical Action Livelihood development in post disaster situations Process guideline 3 . The management committee of needs to be selected by the communities. household and community aspirations for future destinations and identification of resources available for making that journey. The producer groups can get together and develop a common business plan for their products.
Process guideline Build confidence and mutual respect among all stakeholders bonding people within communities and linking with new informal and formal networks Create a sense of ownership. place. both tangible and intangible. to create space for everyone’s views to be heard and outcomes to be negotiated. Process facilitation takes skill. design and implementation. people and objectives of each situation Practical Action Livelihood development in post disaster situations Process guideline 4 . Process facilitators must display an unbiased attitude and willingness to challenge existing power structures – this can be uncomfortable at times. The suggestions made here should be adapted to suit the time. motivation and reward in seeing ideas and actions come to fruition The key challenges in implementing their approach is obtaining necessary resource & ensuring official self management other complex issues include: Collaborative processes take time to work through and yield results. Many of the processes and tools covered in this section can be used at various stages of analysis.
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