From Senegal to Sudan, does building resilience work? | Mark Tran and Liz Ford

From Global development | The Guardian Thu Nov 15 2012, 02:00:23

Making poor people resilient to disaster is gaining credence, but some experts caution that it is not a panacea for development

Resilience has well and truly entered the development mainstream as policymakers contend with drought in the Sahel, tropical storms in Haiti and famine - underpinned by conflict - in the Horn of Africa.

The EU last month set out a new approach designed to build resilience in communities to withstand the impact of crises and disasters - and save money in the long run at a time of growing pressure on aid budgets. The l'Alliance Globale pour l'Initiative Resilience Sahel (Agir-Sahel), launched in June, is one of Europe's flagship programmes to build resilience across the Sahel. With short- and long-term funding, Agir aims to improve access to food, support in-country early warning systems and promote regional co-operation.

Government officials from across the Sahel and representatives from the EU are expected to attend a meeting in Burkina Faso in December to officially launch Agir-Sahel and endorse a "resilience roadmap" to avoid or better cope with recurring crises.

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