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More than 350 million people worldwide are impacted by disasters each year, according to the 2019 Global Humanitarian Overview. For these individuals, the effects of a crisis don’t fade away when the news crews and headlines stop coming. The impact can linger for years–even decades.
Despite this reality, research from the Center for Disaster Philanthropy and Candid found that nearly half of all philanthropic giving occurs in the immediate response and relief phase of a disaster. This leaves reconstruction, resilience-building and preparedness measures largely underfunded. As the scale of disasters increases, it is critical that donors consider long-term investment strategies to support affected communities.
At the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, we are working to more consistently support communities affected by a disaster or humanitarian crisis and to fill gaps left by institutional donors. In late 2018, in addition to our immediate response and systems strengthening work, we committed a second round of funding to three ongoing situations: the multi-faceted crisis in war-torn Yemen; support for Rohingya refugee children in Bangladesh; and local economic development and recovery programs in Puerto Rico.
As crises are increasingly protracted, philanthropy must join us in recognizing the need to commit multiple rounds of funding to reach those most critically impacted.
There is no cookie-cutter approach to disaster funding. Across humanitarian crises, vulnerable populations, including women and girls, the disabled, the elderly or the very young, face unique challenges.
With the current state of climate change, the increasing frequency, intensity and duration of disasters has become our “new normal.” As funders, we have a responsibility to understand the long-term effects of these trends on our partners to ensure our giving is reaching those who need it most.
Read the full article about long-term disaster funding by Rachel Huguet at Center for Disaster Philanthropy.