Partners of Disaster Watch

Huairou Commission is a network of grassroots women’s organizations which partners with organizations and individuals interested in supporting the advocacy efforts of grassroots women HC’s mission is to forging strategic partnerships to advance the capacity of grassroots women and to strengthen and create sustainable communities. Huairou member organizations faced with the challenge of disaster use a strategy which is driven, less by recovery, but by the longer and deeper goals of democracy and sustainable development. These strategies, now demonstrated with remarkable success in four countries and over 13 years, contribute directly to the achievement of each and every one of the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs).2001-2004 Huairou Commission
249 Manhattan Avenue , Brooklyn , New York USA 11211
Tel: 1-718-388-8915 Fax: 1-718-388-0285

GROOTS International
Groots International is a thirteen-year-old network that connects independent women centered community development focused groups in more than forty countries. To build long-term relationships for social change and sustainable
development, network members collaborate to:

» Foster increased opportunities for peer learning among grassroots groups to energize leaders, accelerated innovation and identify shared principles and processes.

» Promote a new knowledge base generated from these experiences and practices to mainstream the governance an development approaches operating in poor communities

» Engage systems of public power to promote a shift in resource and development strategies associations of the poor have the power to plan toward approaches where local and allocate significant resources.

All groups in the disaster campaign are members of GROOTS International, which facilitates planning, fundraising, and advocacy for all the projects, including World Bank training.

GROOTS International Communications
249 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11211, USA
Telephone: (718) 388-8915
Fax: (718) 388-0285

In Honduras , the Comite de Emergencia Garifuna (Garifuna Emergency Committee of Honduras) has supported Garifuna communities affected by Hurricane Mitch in 1998 to mobilize for reconstruction and in ways that address long term livelihoods, food security, cultural preservation and environmental protection of the Garifuna people. This Afro-Indigenous, majority women’s group has raised funds to build houses with and for single mothers, support farmers and fisher people, share food with children and elderly, train youth and women in artisan work and other income generating programs and strengthen communties. In 16 severely affected and marginalized towns, communities created tool banks that lend farm implements to farmers. Farmers here are mostly poor women who work in non-mechanised, subsistence farming. Thus their efforts to address food shortages and the loss of livelihoods caused by the hurricane have improved their ability to secure land tenancy, address long term development challenges and build their resilience to future food shortages.

Comité de Emergencia Garifuna
A.P. 67 Trujillo, Colón , Honduras
T: 504-434-4418

In India, following the earthquake in 1993, Swayam Shikshan Prayog, which was appointed Community Participation Consultants to the Government of Maharashtra led World Bank funded Repair and Strengthening Program. SSP was called in to train and support grasssroots women’s collectives as official communication assistants. This required women leaders to inform and motivate houseowners on information on entitlements and procedures. Women trained in earthquake- safe construction techniques also monitored the repair and strengthening of houses. In addition, at official forums, women leaders provided feedback to the government officials on the progress in construction. This included reporting corrupt practices of Government engineers.

Following the earthquake in Gujarat in 2001, SSP has facilitated a community -community exchanges and capacity building process between experienced women leaders from Maharashtra and women’s groups in Gujarat organizing and accessing entitlements for housing and improving access to basic services. In both locations women’s collectives mobilized as part of post-disaster reconstruction have reduced corrupt practices of middlemen (who profit from the lack of information that communities have) and built their capacities to address ongoing development priorities such as water, sanitation, electricity, health services and schools. Today SSP partners with 1680 savings and credit groups with over 22,507 women members to build capacities to address credit and livelihoods, health and education water & sanitation.

Swayam Shikshan Prayog (SSP)
#20, First Floor
Shahaji Raje Municipal School
Shahaji Raje Road
Ville Parle (East)
Mumbai 400 057. India
T: (91-22) 55841388    |     Tel/Fax: (91-22) -26820905

In Turkey following the Marmara earthquake in 1999, women supported by the Foundation for the Support of Women’s Work began organizing immediately after the earthquake and sustained their involvement through the relief and reconstruction process. Women helped to direct relief resources to those in need of them. They organized to improve sanitation facilities and food quality in the tent cities. Subsequently women have organized nine women and children’s centers in the prefabricated temporary housing settlements in Izmit, Adapazari and Duzce. These multi-purpose centers are places for women to meet, organize, invite officials for dialogue as well as spaces for running early child care and education services. Women are also organizing savings and credit groups, starting economic initiatives and housing cooperatives to address the problem of permanent housing for tenants who lost their homes but are not eligible for replacement housing from the Government. At present, 2000 women are organized in registered organizations through which they undertake small businesses, organize community services and negotiate with government and banks for land, financial services and housing.

Foundation for the Support of Women’s Work (FSWW)
Bekar Sok. No: 17, Beyoglu, Istanbul , Turkey
T: (90-212) 292 26 72, 73, 74, 75
F: (90-212) 249 15 08

CRDC has been working since 1984 to get women involved in shelter and construction activities. It was the first organization in Jamaica to set up a women’s construction collective. The Collective trains and places women in construction related businesses. CRDC has a women’s housing advice line, which provides technical, legal, financial assistance for low income women in search of affordable housing solutions.

Following the extensive damage caused by Hurricanes Gilbert and Hugo in 1988-89, CRDC found that communities were not well prepared for such disasters. The trainings emphasized disaster mitigation through safe construction practices. These practices prevent structural damage to buildings and thus substantially reduce injuries and deaths.

CRDC is currently working with 8 parishes across Jamaica to strengthen the participation of women and poor communities in water and sanitation programs..

Construction Resource & Development Center (CRDC)
11 Lady Musgrave Ave. , Kingston 10, Jamaica

Institutional Partners
European Foundation Center
International Centre for Sustainable Cities (ICSR)
International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI)
International Union of Local Authorities (IULA)
UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) World Bank

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