Browse by Theme: Shelter

As a researcher, I see that humanitarian practitioners listen to and involve local women and women’s groups when delivering programmes on the ground – or at least, if they don’t, they know that they should. But if we are really serious about localisation and gender equality, we also need to invite women from the countries where we deliver programmes to come to our learning and practice workshops back in our home countries.


This report analyses the self-recovery process in the Philippines following super-typhoon Haiyan. The report presents the findings from a peer exchange event hosted by World Habitat which reflected on the lessons learned and the implications for supporting self-recovery in humanitarian shelter practice. The report makes recommendations on: needs assessment or context analysis; project design and implementation; monitoring and evaluation; and community organising for disaster risk reduction.


“Here, we have six seasons,” explained CARE’s Shelter Programme Manager, Shah Suja, as we raced along the road that connects Cox’s Bazar town to the refugee camps. Those “six seasons” bring searing heat, torrential rain, cyclones and storm surges – and with nearly a million refugees now living in this hilly and fragile terrain, with no immediate prospects of returning home and yet prohibited from using durable construction materials, creating and maintaining safe shelters is a real challenge.


This paper presents the findings from a real time research project which sought to understand the impact of Cyclone Idai on urban households and communities as well as the options for shelter actors seeking to support their recovery.


This discussion paper explores the ethics of balancing building back safer with respecting people’s autonomy, and their right to choose their own route to recovery, with reference to a ‘self-recovery’ approach to post-disaster shelter responses.


This discussion paper provides insights into the funding, reach and potential impact of Shelter Cluster-activated responses to rapid-onset disasters between 2007 and 2017. It highlights the information and knowledge gaps and challenges related to understanding impact faced by the Global Shelter Cluster (GSC) and suggests initial points for improvement in gathering and managing information about the sector’s impact.



November 2018

When emergencies strike, CARE works to meet people’s basic shelter needs: protection from the elements, security and a base for their livelihoods. CARE’s approach to shelter creates an enabling environment to mobilise the skills, experience, capacities and resources of affected populations so that they are supported as active agents of their own change.

Our 5 principles of shelter are:

  1. The affected population is the first responder and the most important stakeholder
  2. Shelter responses are always context specific
  3. Shelter programmes should be holistic and integrated
  4. There is a multitude of options for the delivery of shelter programmes
  5. A strong focus on the needs of women and girls

CARE shelter experts currently form part of the Self-recovery from Humanitarian Crisis research team – an interdisciplinary research project led by the Centre for Development and Emergency Practice (CENDEP), Oxford Brookes University, in collaboration with CARE International UK. Other project partners include Catholic Relief Services (CRS), CRAterre, the Global Shelter Cluster, Habitat for Humanity, Overseas Development Institute (ODI) and the British Geological Survey (BGS).

The project focuses on understanding and supporting people’s own choices and efforts to rebuild and self-recover following disasters. The overall aim of the project is to better understand the self-recovery process to inform humanitarian shelter practice, ensuring construction of safer, healthier homes.

CARE also co-chair the Promoting Safer Building Working Group of the Global Shelter Cluster with CRAterre.

Read more

Working towards healthier homes – report from a multi-sectoral shelter and health learning day that explored connections between housing and health in order to build back healthier, as well as safer, after humanitarian crises.

Addressing housing, land and property (HLP) rights challenges – recent HLP profiles for Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey by Hogan Lovells lawyers for CARE International to support shelter practitioners in delivering emergency shelter responses.

Why we must work with refugees from Myanmar on mid-term shelter in the Bangladesh refugee camps – James Morgan, Shelter Advisor, considers the challenges of shifting from short-term emergency response to longer-term support and ensuring families and communities are at the centre of the process

What is self-recovery? – The challenge for humanitarian agencies – reflecting on a study after Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the Philippines in late 2013, Tom Newby, formerly Head of Humanitarian for CARE International UK, asks what we mean by self-recovery, and what does support to self-recovery look like?

The case for self-recovery – article in Forced Migration Review by CARE’s self-recovery research team on the sector’s development of effective and appropriate approaches to supporting the practice of self-recovery for affected people

Self-recovery in Nepal: Reflecting with practitioners – blog by the self-recovery team about a roundtable discussion held in the Dhading District of Nepal with local practitioners, academics, policymakers and affected communities to reflect on the self-recovery programmes in the area since the devastating earthquakes in 2015.

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