Disasters, building resilience and people's wellbeing
Disasters breed and exacerbate poverty and put the lives of many people at risk, especially poor people. They destroy livelihoods and assets, yet also affect other dimensions of well-being, such as a sense of personal dignity, values, individual and collective freedoms and choices, and the ability to live a life of peace and security as an individual and a community. Poor communities are the most vulnerable to natural and human-induced hazards, and it is important to build their resilience to disasters.
In order for families and communities to be resilient, vulnerabilities have to be reduced, hazard risks managed, and recovery from disasters ensured. Moreover, relevant institutional arrangements and legal basis for disaster risk reduction need to be established and made functional.
Oxfam Hong Kong’s Humanitarian and Disaster Risk Management team, based in Hong Kong, oversees the agency’s disaster management work all around the world, except in Mainland China (which is coordinated by our China Unit). This disaster management work includes disaster response, disaster preparedness, capacity building, and community based disaster risk reduction.
Six Aspects of Oxfam Hong Kong's Approach
- Provision of humanitarian relief
Oxfam Hong Kong aims to save lives and to alleviate people’s suffering, through timely provision of relief items (food, clothing, etc), water, sanitation and early livelihoods recovery support.
Ensuring people’s safety, especially of women and girls, is a priority for Oxfam Hong Kong. We integrate protection into water, sanitation and livelihoods projects.
- Humanitarian advocacy
Oxfam Hong Kong helps shape the advocacy agenda on issues such as protection, climate change and disaster risk reduction. We work to influence policies and effect change in humanitarian practice, partnering with organisations working on similar issues.
- Adaptation and livelihoods
Oxfam Hong Kong works towards achieving sustainable livelihoods of poor communities by facilitating and supporting integration of community based disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation into livelihood programmes.
- Gender mainstreaming
At all times, Oxfam Hong Kong supports action that eliminate or reduce unequal power relations between men and women. Based on gender analysis, women’s needs and interests inform all programmes.
- Partnership development
Oxfam Hong Kong works with local community organisations in order to deliver timely, culturally sensitive, effective and appropriate programmes. We also work alongside other affiliates of Oxfam International to pool together our resources.