Lilongwe: Vice President Dr Saulos Chilima has said strengthening resilience against adverse effects of climate change is the key in safeguarding gains the country has achieved in crystallizing better livelihoods for the people in the country..
He made the remarks Wednesday at Crossroads Hotel in Lilongwe during the launch of Resilience Study Report developed by International Non Governmental Organizations (INGO) Consortium.
Chilima said this compliments government’s efforts to achieve resilience in line with National Resilience Strategy of 2017.
It is pleasing to note that the resilience components of the project seek to improve household productive capacity, reduce negative coping strategies and increase the household asset base, which are the key tenets of resilience.
Resilience must ensure better ability to adapt to changes, anticipate what might happen next and absorb shocks when they come. The report we are launching today is clearly another significant milestone towards creating resilient communities, the Vice President pointed out.
Chilima who is also minister responsible for department of disaster management affairs said the early lessons and recommendations documented from field practice in the study report will go a long way in providing insights and shaping the direction of implementation of the National Resilience Strategy for Malawi.
Irish Ambassador to Malawi, Gerry Cunningham said building resilience is at the heart of the Irish government support and it is also being shared among all the other donors.
He said it is becoming increasing clear that the challenges that Malawi has faced like floods, droughts, army worms are not one-off challenges but are those that unfortunately should be expect on a regular basis.
Last year we had 6.7 million people who were food insecure and this year it is a lot better.
But we should not rest but use this year as an opportunity to promote resilience, build up the systems at community levels to ensure that when the shock comes again we are better prepared to respond, Cunningham stated.
Chairperson for INGO Consortium, Collin Blyth said it as important to provide evidence that can show the show the progress being made in order to get the necessary support for such programs.
He revealed that evidence gathered from the program indicate that this is a viable approach.
Although this is a relatively short time frame, you can actually see there is an indication that we could have a 40 per cent reduction of the amount of input required on the following season based on gains made by individual families, which I think that is really significant.
And if you are able to do that on a larger scale particularly over a longer period of time, that should make a massive effect, said Blyth.
Between 2017 and 2018, the INGO Consortium, a grouping of seven international NGOs implemented the program in 10 districts under the theme Breaking the Cycle of Humanitarian Assistance through Enhancing Resilience and Shock Responsive Capacity with funding from DFID and Irish Aid.
The programme focused on building the resilience capacity at selected households and community level which are prone to shocks in order to enhance their abilities to withstand effects of the shocks.
The Consortium includes Save the Children, Goal, Concern World Wide, United Purpose, CEPA, COOPI and OXFAM which is led by Save the Children.
It is targeting the districts of Karonga, Salima, Dedza, Mangochi, Balaka, Machinga, Phalombe, Mulanje, Chikwawa and Nsanje.
Some of the interventions implemented during the program included facilitating access to seeds, small scale irrigation, trainings in climate SMART agriculture, Fall Army Worm response, catchment conservation, village savings and loan associations.
Source: Malawi News Agency MANA