One of the most difficult aspects of providing disaster relief is the management of the deceased. Because disasters can cause a large number of deaths, the need for burial often overwhelms the local systems in place. The most urgent priority of disaster relief is to save lives, but appropriate handling of those killed in a disaster is an important step in the recovery of a community. As bodies of the deceased generally do not pose a public health risk, the main purpose of fatality management is to identify and properly bury the bodies in a way that minimizes distress among survivors.
Disasters are all too frequent, and the material and human costs of such events vary widely. Though disaster strikes both wealthy and poor regions of the world, such events cause especially high levels of death and destruction in developing countries where emergency response is limited. Alongside natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes and floods, man-made disasters such as nuclear accidents and oil spills also present great danger to human and animal life. Humanitarian relief is aid to victims of a natural or man-made disaster.
clean water + sanitation
Globally, more than 660 million people don’t have safe drinking water, and 2.4 billion lack access to improved sanitation facilities.
Without collective and coordinated global efforts, people suffering from a disaster may not get the help and resources they need. More specifically, funding gaps exist from one country to the next due to their geographic and/or political positions, not to mention their humanitarian needs.
Reducing disaster risk requires communities to be properly prepared, so that they are in a better position to respond when a disaster does strike.
The rate at which people are fleeing war and persecution has soared from 6 per minute in 2005 to 24 per minute in 2015, according to the UN Refugee Agency. From what we understand today, forced displacement hit a global high with 65.3 million people displaced from their homes by conflict and persecution in that year and persists today.
Disasters don't recognize borders or socio-economic status. Anyone at any time and in any corner of the world can suffer from a crisis which requires a coordinated, global relief effort in order to provide emergency food, shelter and other provisions.
Disasters can cause significant numbers of severe, disabling injuries, resulting in a public health emergency. Medical relief is an essential part of the immediate response in a large-scale disaster.
Psychologists are often mobilized in response to a disaster in order to help survivors, volunteers and other relief personnel cope with the stress of the situation.
search + rescue
Disasters strike with little to no warning, often causing loss of life, injury and other serious disruptions which can not always be dealt with by local authorities. Response times in situations of crisis vary community by community and often require specialists to assist in the search and rescue procedures.