How climate impacts prevent poor households to achieve resilience

IN the ever-unfolding climate change matrices, poor households are at the centre of interacting with climate vices and challenges hence they can hardly count stocks.

It has since proved difficult for poor households and communities to realise gains and successes in the face of a very hostile environment of climate variability and hazards, which include perennial droughts, rapid flooding, cyclones and other storm events.

These are among the major principal factors which prevent poor communities and households from accumulating meaningful assets, including failure to maintain income levels above the poverty datum lime.

As climate shocks continue to unfold, coupled with the marauding effects of other related shocks such as illnesses, death, staple food or perennial energy poverty and price hikes, life can never be the same again.

These effects expose poverty-stricken households, leading to a downward spiral of deprivations further triggering distress on cost of livelihoods, loss of livestock and other assets, among others.

These poverty-stricken households are forced to sell the little they would have accumulated in order to buy food, send children to school, seek medication as they live from hand to mouth.
For these drawbacks, these communities continue nursing a thin cow and resilience remains a pipe dream, hence they cannot make ends meet.

While climate change continues to increase the frequency and severity of its extreme events, its impacts have already affected the livelihoods of millions of people in developing countries.

Developing countries continue to live and experience climate hazards, lack of adaptive and coping capacities, including home-generated funding, forcing them to rely on forest resources and other natural resources for survival.

In this regard, instead of preserving the environment for sustainable development, they destroy it in attempts to improve their livelihoods.

In this regard, edible fruits, insects and animals become the main targets, including trees for firewood and charcoal as well as minerals for illegal panning.

Many developing countries in these situations lack government and non-governmental organisations support systems like social funds and livelihoods support which serve as useful safety-nets for promoting household resilience to climate risks.

In countries where basic goods and services are not available, these communities remain exposed and vulnerable, including their public infrastructure like schools, clinics, roads and bridges.

Other support systems such as micro-finance and small-scale micro-credit lending is required in securing, building and transforming their livelihoods in the face of climate-driven and other natural shocks.

Building resilience in poor households and vulnerable communities should be the main focus of any government, development sector and civil-societies.

Of course, there should be lessons learnt so far from past failures and successes for future planning.

These challenges which are to be addressed provide starting points of focus, sign-posting and guidance in order to redesign the resilient pathways for future awareness and learning.

The links between the vulnerable communities and national level policies, and their application in public should be transformed.

 Peter Makwanya is a climate change communicator. He writes in his personal capacity and can be contacted on:

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1 Comment

  1. Like!! Really appreciate you sharing this blog post.Really thank you! Keep writing.

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