Browse by Theme: Humanitarian

As children across Europe head back to school, we look to their counterparts across the world. How are children in countries like Madagascar, Afghanistan and Haiti returning to school?

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Co-authored by Emma Weinstein-Sheffield and Sue Webb

World Humanitarian Day on 19th August reminds us that “in 2020, nearly 168 million people will need humanitarian assistance and protection. This represents 1 in about 45 people in the world, and is the highest figure in decades” (UN website). The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has brought into focus how poor housing quality and overcrowding can be detrimental to both mental and physical health.

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This report contains the proceedings of a Multi-sectoral Shelter and Health Learning Day hosted by the ‘Self-recovery from Humanitarian Crisis’ research group. The report, which includes summaries of 20 presentations by humanitarian and development experts, explores how shelter support for housing reconstruction, including through self-recovery, can contribute to physical and mental wellbeing in the short- and long-term for people recovering from disasters.

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The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are exposing the existing flaws in food systems, many of which stem from gender inequalities and the unfair treatment of women and girls. Rising hunger and food shortages are also putting additional burdens on women, from mental health risks to gender-based violence. This report, based on a CARE analysis of 73 global reports proposing solutions to the hunger pandemic, shows that responses to COVID-19 and related hunger crises are either ignoring women and girls or treating them as victims who have no role in addressing the problems they face.

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After disasters and in post-conflict returns, many families will rebuild relying on their own resources, with little or no support from formal institutions or the humanitarian community – they self-recover. Previous research indicates that support after a major disaster is likely to meet only around 15% of the shelter needs, often less. Yet, many people will rebuild homes incorporating the same housing vulnerabilities as before and the opportunity to build safer, healthier homes can be missed. So what more can we do to support this inevitable process of shelter self-recovery?

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It’s hard to believe the changes in the world today. They are coming so fast and so completely that we can lose track of what’s happening. It can be hard to feel hopeful as COVID-19 cases rise, economies crash, and underlying inequality skyrockets. In the upheaval, there is also hope.

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This report highlights the causes and consequences of climate-induced displacement. It argues that climate change exacerbates existing gender inequalities. The report calls for more women’s leadership and greater financial support for gender-just solutions to climate-induced displacement.

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