Community Based Early Warning Solutions
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Community Based
Early Warning Solutions

"The ultimate goal is to move beyond preparedness to respond at an institutional level, toward ensuring communities are empowered to take collective precautionary measures and action in response to imminent threats"

Early Warning Systems (EWS) is an end to end process, comprised of various components that connects the end users (communities living in high risk areas) to those that collect, monitor and evaluate hazard information (scientific/technical stakeholders). Considering this, Community Based Early Warning Systems (CBEWS) are therefore an effort by communities to collect, monitor and evaluate information that allows the communication of actionable warning messages to ensure communities are better prepared and able to reduce the impact of a hazard. Ideally, this would require local government to work with communities with information flowing in both directions.
The ultimate goal is to move beyond preparedness to respond at an institutional level, toward ensuring communities are empowered to take collective precautionary measures and action in response to imminent threats. In doing so, one has a greater opportunity to prevent disasters and other incidents through early warnings, making response to these incidents less and less necessary.
Approaching CBEWS in a Holistic Way
Recognising international calls for action, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015 – 2030 (SDFDRR), addresses the need for improved understanding of disaster risk, placing emphasis on exposure and vulnerability, and highlighting the need to strengthen disaster risk governance, through sharing and communication of risk information, and accountability for disaster risk management, recognising all the relevant stakeholders.

DMS’s approach to CBEWS is to make use of an internationally recognised Framework, as depicted..

Suggested Capacity Building


The overarching objective of CBEWS support would be to bridge the gap between ‘scientists’ and ‘high risk communities’ in the dissemination of critical information for imminent threats. Moving beyond preparedness at an institutional level, towards collective precautionary measures and action in response to imminent threats.


DMS therefore assists its clients in:

  • bridging the gap between local government and communities located in high risk areas, 
  • the dissemination of early warnings,
  • utilising indigenous knowledge, and
  • considering both conditions of vulnerability and available capacity within these communities. 


With DMS’s wealth of experience in Disaster Risk Management (the company has been operating in this field for 15 years, while some individuals in the company has up to 45 years’ experience), DMS is therefore the ideal implementation partner in a project like this. Please see our complete company profile with a list of projects completed.

Conclusion


Local governments have the first legal responsibility for disaster risk reduction, and should be seen to partner directly with communities in developing EWS. Local government institutions are situated closest to communities, and through good risk governance, can be an accountable channel for state resources for EWS. In addition, disaster risk management will require robust information management systems, with good quality data to inform the need and assist with the monitoring and communication of effective CBEWS. 


Through the consultative and capacity building approach offered by DMS, these structures and processes can easily be facilitated and met.

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