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Flood-Management Training for Elected Women in India and Nepal

Program Year: 2018

By Aditya Pillai

The Asia Foundation’s Aditya Pillai participated in Global Climate Action Summit events across San Francisco in September. Among Foundation programs he discussed are those that improve resilience to extreme weather events.

In the Kosi basin, which straddles Nepal and India, The Asia Foundation is conducting a training-of-trainers for roughly 200 elected women from local government and female political-party leaders to help them improve their communities’ resilience to frequent floods. Extreme weather events are expected to have a growing impact in coming decades on glacial rivers such as the Kosi, and these events often pose a unique and outsized threat to women and marginalized groups. For a disaster-prone region, the knowledge to adapt, effective engagement with local governments, and adequate representation of marginalized populations are critical. The DFID-funded program helps trainees work with local governments on predisaster planning and postdisaster response.The training addresses flood-related challenges to health and sanitation (particularly water-borne and mosquito-related diseases), livelihoods (as most women are involved in farming and animal husbandry, the sectors most affected by the floods), prenatal and childcare (floods disrupt transport, leaving pregnant women and mothers of young children without access to health care) and other topics. Through subsequent classes in these trainers’ communities, the program is expected to reach 2,000 individuals.

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