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Conference on confronting crises

Concern Worldwide is playing a leading role in a major conference in Ethiopia on how to build the resilience of the world’s most vulnerable people to crises. 

As food shortages, recurring droughts, rising food prices and political crises continue to cause shocks for poor communities, so too does the urgency for long term solutions.

Lessons learned

Concern will be drawing upon lessons learned from our resilience building work across the Horn of Africa and the Sahel in recent years. Evidence of this work will be taken from the current Global Hunger Index, which we published in collaboration with the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) and Germany’s Welthungerhilfe

Aims

The conference, called IFPRI 2020, aims to: 

  • Evaluate the threats to food supplies
  • Determine ways to build the resilience of the poor 
  • Set priorities for action in different regions 

We will speak about our resilience work in Ethiopia as well as ongoing research in Chad in collaboration with Tufts University to confront the problem of under-nutrition. 

Human cost

The conference, from 15 to 17 May, will also highlight the need to address the suffering of the world’s poorest people, whose lives have been the most impacted by climate change. In the 1980s, the cost of natural disasters was €35 billion per year, a figure that has climbed to €150 billion in the last 10 years. This figure is expected to increase, as the current trend of weather-related emergencies continues.

Cost of inaction

The cost of inaction is a major factor for poor countries already burdened by food shortages, conflict and debt. Beyond damage costs, some of the additional financial consequences are: reduced revenues, increased expenditure, increased public debt and disruptions of global supply chains.  

Return on investment

Commitment to preparing for disaster, reducing risk and resilience building programmes are both smart and cost-effective. For every euro invested in building resilience, the return is four to seven times more.