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IGAD & UNOSAT Host a National Level Flood and Drought Management Workshop in Kigali

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24 February 2016, Kigali, Rwanda – Within the framework of the 42nd Greater Horn of Africa Climate Outlook Forum, UNOSAT and IGAD’s Climate Prediction and Application Centre (ICPAC) successfully hosted a one-day national level technical workshop on flood and drought management.

The workshop was delivered as part of the project “_Capacity  Development in Geospatial  Technology for  Disaster  Risk  Reduction in  the  Horn of  Africa_”, which aims  at  supporting the  establishment  of  a geospatial  decision  support system to manage flood and drought risk in the region.  The project was implemented by UNOSAT in collaboration with IGAD, and made possible with the generous contribution of the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

This workshop was developed to help ICPAC Member States familiarise themselves with the products developed together with UNOSAT. These products include an online geoportal for accessing and sharing relevant geospatial information, a flood hazard map for the region,  and  a  live  web-map  to  monitor  climate  and  related  hazards  including  impacts  from  the  El  Niño phenomenon.

During the workshop, participants were invited to present their countries’ experiences in flood and drought management as well as challenges and needs for further improvements. They were also introduced to the Flood-FINDER initiative,  a  flood  forecasting  system  developed  by  UNITAR-UNOSAT  in  collaboration  with  CIMA  Foundation, USGS and CERN. They learned about the geospatial services and support available at regional level and how these can be downscaled to fit country-specific needs. 90% of participants were satisfied and stated that overall, the workshop was useful to them: "_this initiative is good and I would like to encourage the organisers to enhance their efforts to make more such activities"_.  One participant highlighted that “_the workshop was very specific and relevant to the topic that was discussed_.”

There was exchange of information between ICPAC Member States and the UNOSAT-ICPAC team benefitting both participants and organisers. Member States discussed on the gaps and evolving needs of their countries and the steps needed to improve the individual countries’ flood and drought management future activities. Through its regional liaison office in Nairobi, UNOSAT will continue working closely with IGAD to develop geospatial products that address the evolving needs of Member States.

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