The 18th Brussels Development Briefing on natural disasters, humanitarian assistance and rural development took place on 12th May 2010 (8h30-13h00) at Borschette Center.  108 participants discussed the Humanitarian needs and responses looking  at recent trends and challenges.  In fact, the earthquake in Haiti as many other recent natural disasters have highlighted the fragility of some States and the need for strong institutions able to strengthen risk reduction mechanisms and disaster preparedness.  In this respect, the need for coordination and effectiveness in interventions by donors and actors is a key issue. We looked at the impact of natural disasters  on rural development. A special emphasis was put on the role of agriculture and rural development in rebuilding and rehabilitation efforts.

Welcome remarks by the organisers

Panel 1 –Humanitarian assistance and rural development: trends and challenges

The number and frequency of natural disasters is growing. Population growth, climate change and natural resource scarcity will increase humanitarian needs and food aid, especially in the most vulnerable countries. This panel will review current trends, main players and challenges in emergency responses.


– Global Humanitarian Assistance: architecture, main players and trends, Jan Kellett, Programme Leader, Global Humanitarian Assistance, United Kingdom, [Executive Summary], [Presentation]

-Coordination in post-disaster response: progress made and challenges ahead, Doekle Wielinga, Team Leader Sustainable Recovery, Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery, World Bank, [Executive Summary], [Presentation]

-Linking emergency response, recovery and development, Red Cross perspective, Kiflemariam Amdemariam, Senior Officer, Food Security Community Preparedness & Risk Reduction Department, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, [Executive Summary], [Presentation]

-Addressing long term issues in humanitarian crisis contexts: Improving Food Security Analysis and Response, Luca Alinovi, Expert, Economic Division, FAO, [Presentation]

Panel 2 – Lessons learnt and policy options

In the context of the new EC communication on Humanitarian Food Assistance, this panel will discuss the lessons learnt from recent natural disasters and the needs to ensure a long-term recovery with strong institutions able to cope with disaster preparedness and effectiveness of response. It will look at the need for coordination by donors and actors.


-From Humanitarian Food Assistance to long term food security, Nicholas Weatherill, DG ECHO, Marc Debois, DG Development, Jacques Prade, DG EuropAid, European Commission, [Presentation]

-Rehabilitation in agriculture and rural areas: what can we learn from recent experiences? Laurent Thomas, Director, Emergency Operation and Rehabilitation Division, FAO, [Presentation]

-Enabling smallholder and low-income farmers to supply food and reducing risks, Laura Melo, Communication Officer for WFP Purchase for Progress, World Food Programme, [Presentation]

-New challenges for humanitarian civil society organizations, Kathrin Schick, Director, Voluntary Organisations in Cooperation in Emergencies (VOICE)


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