The communication guidelines presented in this report build on the systematization of good practices on DRR communication in the Caribbean region, by presenting guidelines to expand and replicate the good practices in a systematic, consistent manner. The guidelines aim to support mutual reinforcement of the good practices and enhanced effectiveness. The guidelines also reflect linkages to the work done by DIPECHO partners in Central America and South America, to ensure consistency and harmonization of practices.
The European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (ECHO) through its DIPECHO programme actively supports disaster preparedness within the Caribbean region by enhancing local capacities to face and respond to the many natural hazards to which is it vulnerable. One of the elements of the 2013-2014 DIPECHO Action Plan for the Caribbean focuses on improving communication on disaster risk reduction in the region to enable the most at risk communities to anticipate, withstand, adapt and sometimes, recover quickly from disasters. Within this context, the regional project of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) coordinated efforts to develop guidelines for communicating disaster risk reduction (DRR) information based on identified good communication practices in the Caribbean region.
To inform the development of the communications guidelines, a consultation process was undertaken engaging three main stakeholder groups in the Caribbean: DIPECHO partners, National Disaster Management Offices and other regional DRR stakeholders to gather their experiences in communicating DRR information in the region.
The consultations gathered specific examples of effective communication practices:
- Developing activities that engage youth in DRR
- Enabling technology to support DRR communication
- Leveraging the immediacy of social media
- Communicating on key dates
- Creating innovative partnerships
- Micro-targeting communication content
- Using alternative channels to communicate DRR information.