Learning from today’s disasters for tomorrow’s hazards
2004 World Disaster Reduction Campaign
What can you do to participate in the 2004 World Disaster Reduction Campaign?

The International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) aims at increasing public awareness to understand risk, vulnerability and disaster reduction globally. In order to achieve this, the ISDR unites international agencies, non-governmental organizations, government representatives, local decision makers, scientists, educators and local communities to work together; in order to generate more widespread commitment to and better understanding of disaster reduction.

Organized by the Inter-Agency Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR), the annual World Disaster Reduction Campaign is qn opportunity for these actors to interact and bring more people to learn about disaster risk reduction. The Campaign builds momentum and culminates in the International Day for Natural Disaster Reduction, whereby it is celebrated internationally by global organizations, regional institutions and local communities alike.

In 2004 the International Day for Disaster Reduction will be commemorated on Wednesday 13 October.

There are numerous ways to spread the word about the importance of disaster reduction. Learning about what you can do to reduce risk and vulnerability to disasters can be fun – whether it takes place in the classroom, during community gatherings or at home. The International Day for Disaster Reduction is the ideal opportunity to plan events to raise public awareness and share knowledge.

Here are some ideas of what you can do:

· Organize roundtable of local leaders reflecting on lessons learned from past disasters
· Hold a community festival that allows people to share “good practices” in disaster reduction
· Write an article for a local newspaper on imminent hazards and what can be done to prepare for them

Other ways to participate in the global movement for disaster risk reduction include the translation/adaption of the educational kit “Let’s learn to prevent disasters!” and Riskland game as well as participation in the UN/ISDR international art contest.

Messages on the occasion of the International Day for Disaster Reduction

Often high-profile personalities such as politicians (presidents, ministers, governors and mayors), actors, musicians, heads of organizations attract wide media and public attention when they speak on a subject. Write to someone famous, requesting them to make a statement on the importance of the subject on the occasion of the International Day for Disaster Reduction, and send UN/ISDR (isdr@un.org) the text of the statement so that we can share it with others around the world.

Do YOU have something to say for the International Day for Disaster Reduction?

Have you ever experienced a disaster? How did you feel afterwards? What did you learn from the experience? What kind of measures do you take to protect yourself and your family from tomorrow’s hazards? Write to UN/ISDR (isdr@un.org) and tell us about your experience and what your community is doing to avoid future disasters!