The increasing frequency and intensity of disasters and humanitarian crises and the resulting suffering and losses represent a major threat to long-term development, growth and poverty reduction, in particular in the poorest and developing countries. There is an urgent need to help people and communities to withstand and recover from these increasing shocks and stresses. In other words, help them strengthen their resilience.
Investing in disaster resilience today is more cost effective than responding to a crisis tomorrow. Action now, to reduce future suffering and loss, is vital in order to ensure better results on the ground, in areas of recurring crises and predictable risks. Focusing on vulnerabilities and addressing root causes rather than dealing with the consequences underpin this approach.
In 2012, the European Union launched two flagship resilience initiatives: the Supporting Horn of African Resilience (SHARE) and l'Alliance Globale pour l'Initiative Résilience - Sahel et Afrique de l'Ouest (AGIR).
Rapid progress is being made to integrate resilience into programmes in other countries and regions. EU interventions on climate change, disaster risk reduction, agriculture, food and nutrition security and social protection already embed resilience as a policy priority.
Last year, the European Commission allocated 20% of its humanitarian funding to Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). Almost two-thirds of all relief assistance projects included DRR activities, reaching out 18 million people worldwide.