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Plan Sweden. Urban children’s risk and agency. Olle Castell Disaster Risk Management Advisor. Plan International. Child Rights organization Active in 50 countries Program Units – traditionally dominantly rural 8 impact areas – Disaster Risk Management is one of them.

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Plan sweden

Plan Sweden

Urban children’s risk and agency

Olle Castell

Disaster Risk Management Advisor

Plan international

Plan International

  • Child Rights organization

  • Active in 50 countries

  • Program Units – traditionally dominantly rural

  • 8 impact areas – Disaster Risk Management is one of them

Child centered disaster risk reduction

Child Centered Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Children are proportionally affected

    • Typically 50-60% of those affected by disasters

    • Death and illness, exploitation and abuse, failure to meet right to education, development and protection

  • Children as agents for change

    • Children are often portrayed as passive victims

    • When provided with accurate support and protection they have a great capacity to become agents of change

    • “take the most advantaged and put them in the centre of the process”

Urban risks

Urban Risks

  • The world’s population is increasingly urban

  • Urban areas areincreasinglyrecognized as beingsusceptibleto the impactsod disasters and climatechange

  • A high proportion of urban residents arechildren

Is disaster risk management different in urban areas

Is Disaster Risk Management different in Urban areas?

  • Plans Toolkitslargleydeveloped and adjustedtorural contexts

  • Is there a needtodevelop different models for urban contexts?

Scale of risk

Scale of risk

Resilience versus Disaster Risk Reduction

Study on urban child centered disaster risk reduction

Study on Urban Child Centered Disaster Risk Reduction

  • Plan International and IIED undertook a study on urban childrens risk and agency

  • Jakarta, Manila, Dhaka and Kathmandu

  • Focus Group Discussions and Interviews with street children, working children and children living in squatters and slums

Who is at risk

Who is at risk

Urban children are generally better off than their rural counterparts. However, this is not true for hundred of millions of children live in urban poverty.



Risk =


  • Who within an urban population is at risk?

    • Those who live and work in overcrowded informal settlements concentrated in hazard prone areas that lack basic protective infrastructure and service

    • Children, particularly girls, are disproportionally affected

    • Street children, working children and children living in squatters and slums

Urban slums

Urban Slums

  • UN Habitat: five slum deprivations, lack of (one or more):

    • Access to improved water

    • Access to improved sanitation

    • Security of tenure

    • Durability of housing

    • Sufficient living area (< 4 people/room)

Plan sweden

Priority action for reducing urban children s risks

Priority action for reducing urban children’s risks

  • Enhance access to quality housing and other buildings with appropriate basic infrastructure

  • Build capacity of families and communities to cope with shocks and stresses

  • Foster shared planning processes between children and adults

  • Target beneficiaries based on better understanding of the differentials in risk between high- and low-income children

Particular aspects in urban drr programming

Particular aspects in Urban DRR programming

Much is same as usual, byt somethingsdiffer:

  • Common goods – sewage system, pipedwater, public transports insteadofindividual HH solutions as pit latriesand wells

  • Morecomplex public administration

  • Closerto central ministries (if in capital)

  • Need for strong analysistoreach the mostvulnerable – can’ttarget all

  • Proliferationof NGOs

  • Dynamic population, migration

  • Livelihood different - workers – not farmers. Needtoaddressworksiteenvironment, factories…