Nowadays development efforts require that special consideration be given to issues such as climate change, disaster risk reduction and sustainable natural resources management. Multidisciplinary approaches are needed to achieve consensus and multi-stakeholder action. In particular, local adaptation practices are only successful when they integrate scientific expertise with local and indigenous knowledge, through the active involvement of communities in decision-making. Promoting community mobilization and concerted action aimed at prevention, mitigation and adaptation requires communication.
The ComDev approach to climate change adaptation makes use of participatory communication processes, strategies and media to share information and knowledge among relevant stakeholders in a particular agro-ecological context. This in turn enhances people’s resilience and offers livelihood options to cope with climate change, natural disasters and emergencies.
FAO is presently assisting member countries and field programmes in the design and implementation of ComDev components, strategies and tools in support of sustainable natural resource management, climate adaptation and disaster risk reduction in Africa, Latin America, Asia and the Caribbean Region.
A global programme called Communication for Sustainable Development Initiative (CSDI) has achieved positive results in countries such as Bangladesh, Bolivia, Jamaica, Dominican Republic and Haiti applying ComDev in support of community-based climate adaptation and disaster risk reduction. Communication capacities of key institutions, NGOs, development programmes and community media have been strengthened to improve knowledge and information sharing and assist small farmers in identifying suitable coping strategies.
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