International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction 2021: Promoting Disability Inclusion in Disaster Risk Governance


Only together can we make true progress towards a safer and more resilient planet.”

Mami Mizutori, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction and Head of UNDRR
Disability inclusion is key to effective disaster risk governance. No one is safe until everyone is safe.

The International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction was started in 1989, after a call by the United Nations General Assembly for a day to promote a global culture of risk-awareness and disaster reduction. Every 13 October, the day celebrates how people and communities around the world are reducing their exposure to disasters and raising awareness about the importance of reining in the risks they face. The 2021 edition focuses on “International cooperation for developing countries to reduce their disaster risk and disaster losses.” This focus is the sixth of the Sendai Seven targets [1].

Disasters affect all people disproportionately. Persons with disabilities and other at-risk groups are often left behind in disaster response and preparedness, particularly those living in low- and middle-income countries. Without inclusion, we cannot build the resilience of persons with disabilities in the face of disasters and other extreme weather events exacerbated by climate change. Strengthening the capacity and meaningful participation of persons with disabilities in disaster risk governance is urgently needed. No one is safe until everyone is safe. Only by leaving no one behind can we tackle the global threats, including eradicating poverty, pandemic, and climate emergency.

The Disability-inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction (DiDRR) project–jointly implemented by Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund (ASB), Malteser International (MI), Christoffel Blindenmission (CBM), and Centre for Disability in Development (CDD), as well as the International Disability Alliance (IDA)–has the vision to contribute to the Sendai Framework targets by fostering inclusive approaches to disaster risk reduction and humanitarian action. It brings together key actors from the international to the local level, including organisations of persons with disabilities (OPDs), to generate and exchange knowledge, develop capacity and explore best practices regarding the implementation of commitment in inclusion. Read more about our project here.

#DRRDay #OnlyTogether

[1] United Nations, International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction, 13 October, available at

Other News & Articles