This is our story of natural disaster – and, for once, it’s told entirely by us

Ernest Ta'asi Disasters, Innovation, Participation and Leadership

None of the roles in a powerful recent film about South Pacific islanders reacting to a cyclone is played by a professional actor, says Oxfam’s Ernest Ta’asi. Instead, the actors and script writers all came from the island community – in what may be a game-changer for NGO storytelling

Betting on blockchain to deliver cash in the Pacific

Sandra Uwantege Hart Cash transfers, Disasters, ICT4D, Innovation

Sandra Uwantege Hart, Pacific Cash & Livelihoods Lead, describes how Oxfam successfully used blockchain technology to make cash accessible to communities and small businesses in Vanuatu – one of the world’s most remote and hazard-prone locations. We are told that blockchain technology will change the world – harnessing a decentralised, distributed ledger, removing expensive middlemen and resolving core issues of …

Strengthening women’s agency after drought in Ethiopia

Tess Dico-Young Disasters, Gender, General, Humanitarian

People in Ethiopia’s Somali region have had their lives turned upside down by three years of drought. Oxfam’s research has found that there are several ways in which aid agencies can better meet the needs of women and girls and promote gender equality. Over the past three years the rains have been sparse in the Ethiopian Somali region. This year’s …

Disaster insurance: propaganda or the future of aid?

Anna Warwick Climate Change, Disasters

Could disaster insurance be the future of aid? Anna Warwick summarises the debate on the role of insurance to build resilience in disaster prone areas. From one of the sessions which took place at the Oxfam hosted Resilient Solutions symposium. Theresa May recently stated that disaster insurance programmes were the ‘future of aid.’ After seeing the panel on Weather Insurance …

How entrepreneurship can support post-disaster recovery

Caroline Baxter Tresise Disasters, General, New Urbanism

Post-disaster situations can open up opportunities for small businesses, boosting the local economy and enabling disaster-affected communities to support themselves. Caroline Baxter Tresise reflects on the role of coffee shops in Indonesia after the 2004 tsunami. The role of entrepreneurs in post-disaster community recovery should be supported and encouraged as entrepreneurs occupy key positions when assessing and planning for rapidly …

Who needs religious literacy? In a disaster, maybe we all do

Tara Gingerich Conflict, Disasters, Humanitarian

Tara Gingerich reflects on her recent work researching religious literacy; what she realised about her own point of view and why we need to engage with religion. I remember when I first started to talk with Oxfam colleagues about the new research project I would be leading, together with the Harvard Divinity School. It was on how Oxfam and other …

What next for the pastoralists in Ethiopia’s drought?

Oxfam Disasters, Humanitarian

ON THE GROUND REFLECTION: Pastoral nomads in Ethiopia have been heavily affected by a record-breaking drought. They have lost their flocks and their way of life and make up the majority of the 800,000 people classified as internally displaced (IDPs). What will they do next and how do we best support men, women, boys and girls in this disaster? Eliza …

European governments’ treatment of refugees is doing long term damage to international law

Maya Mailer Conflict, Disasters, Governance, Humanitarian, In the news, Rights

OPINION: The EU’s stance towards migration sets a dangerous precedent argues Maya Mailer, Head of Humanitarian Policy & Campaigns. Today, as Oxfam launches a new campaign calling on world leaders to stand as one with refugees, the right to seek protection in another country is under threat. I visited some of Europe’s refugee camps recently. Oxfam was founded in 1942 …