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Building Community Resilience through DRR and CCA

Start project:
  • 2019
  • Kerk in Actie
  • Church of Uganda-HCT

This project aims to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable communities affected by natural and human induced disasters in Kitgum. The project focuses on: 1. increasing awareness on DRR and CCA, 2. strengthening structures at district, sub county and community levels, 3. mainstreaming DRR in Kitgum diocesan development plans of Kitgum, and 4. supporting climate- resilient livelihoods of 250 vulnerable Households (1500 people). Indirect beneficiaries of 1. and 2. are 500.000 people.

Project Rationale
The country’s vulnerability to climate change coupled with unsustainable farming practices and lack of training of extension officers on climate change and disaster risk reduction measures is an opportunity for integrating DRR and resilience programming into poverty reduction initiatives. This is the basis for this project that aims to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable communities affected by natural and human induced disasters in Kitgum Diocese of the church of Uganda. Disaster Risk Reduction programming can serve as an entry point to building the resilience of poor and vulnerable communities.
CoU overall, and Kitgum diocese, have partnered with ICCO&KiA in the past 2 years in a program aimed at enhancing capacities on DRR & EPRP through the EU Aid Volunteers program. This project builds on that program by allowing to put into practice the lessons learned and action plans developed.

1.6 Risk Analysis
Prolonged drought; according to the Districts assessment reports, almost 80% of households in Kitgum have been severely affected by the second season drought that persisted from June to September 2018, and it is estimated that yield losses could be between 50 - 70 percent in this second season harvests; mainly maize, beans and simsim have been drastically affected. This is mainly attributed to human activities that have resulted into the atmosphere of GHSs that caused global warming and therefore climate change.
Unreliable rains; in the 2017 season, rains peaked in May through July for the first season instead of the normal Feb through March and this made the first season almost yield less. In 2018 on the other hand the rains came very early in February through to May and disappeared till October. Besides the rains are too heavy, with strong winds, hailstones and storms which are destructive. Also very much related to human activity that leads to changes in climate and weather patterns.
Prevalence of crop/animal pests and diseases; this has been a continuous challenge in the last few years and scientist believe it is closely linked to climate change impacts; fall army worm has over the last few seasons ravaged cereal crop fields especially maize, in which it destroys an acre in just 72 hours without proper management. It was even worse in the 2017 season where almost all maize fields in Kitgum were invaded by the new devastating fall army worm. Other crop/animal pests and diseases are also affecting like; striga weed, new castle disease, swine fever etc.
Runoff water (soil erosion); due to heavy down pour during rainy seasons coupled with traditional agricultural practices, this challenge continues to be a hazard. As a result of changes in climate and weather patterns, often times rains are too heavy in certain periods causing surface run-off water and soil erosion.
Deforestation and bush burning; these practices are very common in Kitgum and generally interferes with the natural processes that help in reducing GHG emission and protection of soil cover, they are attributed to cultural practices, poverty and lack of awareness leading to felling of trees for charcoal and fire wood selling as alternative sources of income and clearance of farm lands during preparation for planting.
This project therefore, intends to tailor the DRR trainings and activities to particularly address these local context risk factors (hazards) which affect the community in Kitgum Diocese, particularly Akwang sub county.

2.0 Cross cutting issues in the project area.

Civil/land wrangles; after a long period of confinement in the IDP camps, up on coming back, for many years land conflicts have been very common in Kitgum and sometimes results into loss of lives and property therefore increasing people’s vulnerability. This will be an integral part of the project, ensuring trainings and IEC materials capture and insight in to this subject matter.
Nodding syndrome; about 60 percent of households in Akwang sub county have been affected by this problem, majority of women are held back home and cannot move far from home since they have to take care of the sick children and this has greatly interfered with their active participation in farm work, given that women do most of the farm work at household level, therefore these households remain food insecure with increased vulnerability. The project will ensure representation from families affected by the syndrome as part of inclusion.
Gender; the project will incorporate aspects of gender in all its stages, ensuring women participate in reasonable numbers in all intervention activities.

1.7 Project Overview
This project will contribute to the broader CoU and ICCO strategic focus area on DRR and climate change and adaptation. The project will create awareness on DRR and CCA, strengthen local capacity in DRR, support lobby and advocacy on DRR mainstreaming, and support rural financial access through VSLAs, introduce climate resilient agricultural livelihood practices and build local capacity to prepare for and respond to natural and man-made disasters and adapt to the impacts of climate change and variability.

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Project started:
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Project started:
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