DWF Lessons from Vietnam


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DWF Lessons from Vietnam

  1. 1. “Reconstruction, and after…” Lessons from Viet Nam DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOP FRANCE Looking back at reconstruction Conference Coventry, U.K 15-16 January 2014
  2. 2. Vietnam 2
  3. 3. Xangsane 2006 Disasters in VN HUE Flood 1999 HUE Cecil 1985 Natural disasters Annual losses 1% GDP
  4. 4. Wutip & Nari 2013 4
  5. 5. National Strategy for DRR National Target Programme for Climate Change National Programme on CBDRM Law on DRR have been prepared, voted, and are implemented.
  6. 6. But more poor, more vulnerable people, more affected by natural disasters!
  7. 7. Who can reduce vulnerability ? Family, local authorities, & government 7
  8. 8. Household level Policy, law, codes, regulations Hazards & risks HOUSE Land Funding, savings & loans Building materials & techniques Intellectual and physical labour Infrastructure & services Family needs, wishes, capacity, vision of future
  9. 9. People struggle for « better » homes Despite poverty, over the past 30 years families have incrementally replaced bamboo and thatch houses with more durable structures, building what they believe is a stronger house. Sadly, few houses have been either well built or completely finished and they cannot resist a strong storm.
  10. 10. Stronger materials, but badly used
  11. 11. Vulnerability is increasing: there is more to lose ! Precious family investment in the home is at serious risk from annual typhoons and floods. Unneccesary damage could be avoided. 11
  12. 12. When disaster strikes… Families have had to cope on their own for reconstruction. • There has been little support and no recognition of the important contribution families can make to damage prevention. • Rebuilding costs many times more than any support they get from the state.
  13. 13. For families, damage prevention is the best option It is cheaper, it is easy, and it is socially appropriate Preventive strengthening at domestic level needs to made a priority. 13
  14. 14. BUILDING SAFER & BET TER ! 14
  15. 15. The DWF project objective is to reduce vulnerability and damage in houses and small infrastructure. The DWF project helps protect family investment in shelter and enables investment in improvements, not repairs.
  16. 16. Making new and existing houses strong and safe Vulnerable house Technical support Stronger houses Subsidy Loans Temporary house
  17. 17. 10 generic principles of safer construction 18
  18. 18. Housing preventive reinforcement 2000 – 20013
  19. 19. Guidelines for safe housing 20
  20. 20. Reconstruction programmes after typhoons & floods 2007 & 2010 THUA THIEN HUE 21
  21. 21. 2010 2012, 2013 6 Provinces Mekong Delta
  22. 22. Survey: Reconstruction, and after ? 23
  23. 23. Reconstruction in Kontum (2010) Risks: Flash flood, flood, typhoon Community of minority people in Highlands of central Vietnam; living in the hills, then relocated near a river - after construction of a school. Extremely poor. Houses destroyed after Typhoon Ketsana (October 2009) Relocated in a new settlement in the same Commune in a safer area. System of cash grant (same amount for all beneficiaries), design made with families, but with the lack of local builders, construction by a Construction Company from District centre. No financial contribution at all. 24
  24. 24. 25
  25. 25. 26
  26. 26. Reconstruction in Quang Ngai (2010) Risk: Typhoon Village of fishermen, and small business along the coast, central Vietnam. Houses destroyed by Typhoon Ketsana (October 2009). Reconstruction programme funded by IFRC, to rebuilt safe house on the same land. System of cash grant (same amount for all beneficiaries), with proposals of model houses, discussions with families to adapt the model to needs and capacities, technical standards and supervision of construction by local builders. 27
  27. 27. 2010 2013 28
  28. 28. Reconstruction in Thua Thien Hue (2010) Risk: Typhoon, and sea surge, flood Community of fishermen, along the lagoon of south Thua Thien Hue province, living previously in boats, and resettled on land in a small hamlet, far from the Commune centre, and without easy access. Houses damaged or destroyed by Typhoon Ketsana (October 2009). Reconstruction programme, funded by the French Prime Minister’s Office, to rebuilt or strengthened houses on the same land by the sea/lagoon, and construction of a dyke to protect the hamlet. Used a system of cash grants, with technical advice, guidelines for construction by local builders, and supervision of works. Financial contribution from families. 29
  29. 29. Prevention in Thua Thien Hue (2000 – 2009) Risk: Typhoon, flood Rural Commune, in the coastal plain. Several programmes from 2000 to 2009 to support families to strengthen their house, with a subsidy and family contributions. Works done by local builders. 30
  30. 30. Safe during Wutip typhoon ! 31
  31. 31. Findings from the survey Preliminary remark All the programmes are of small or medium scale (ex. Programme reconstruction 650 houses in 6 Provinces, or 25-30 houses in one Commune) targeting poor families seriously affected by natural disasters, and faced with specific disaster events or regular disaster events, and who have insufficient capacity to rebuild their house safely –mainly because of lack of sufficient funding. In most of the programmes, the families’ contribution (almost always funded through private loans or gifts) has been a significant part of the expenditure, as families decide to invest in completing their house for their own and the house’s long term safety. Proposed designs are adapted for and adopted by each family, and include basic guidelines for safer construction.
  32. 32. Perception by families benficiaries  After several years, all families are still living in their rebuilt houses, and these in many cases have been improved and/or extended.  No damage has occurred during more recent disaster events. Achieving safety is in effect a catalyst for then generating improvement of the house.  The perception of being “safe” has thus created a better way of living for families, who can now allocate their savings to other economic needs and this frequently does include extending and improving their home.  Their new/rebuilt home needs no repairs, needs less or very little maintenance is easier for cleaning and through this contributes to lower the traditional work of women. Practices of project implementation  Relations with DWF staff are also considered as a key point for the project implementation at all stages, with a single person being allocated to a family and seeing the construction/reconstruction process through from start to finish.  Programmes were based on local traditions and local materials and implemented with local builders chosen by families. Families had the opportunity to change the proposed designs according to their needs, wishes and financial capacity –whilst respecting the key principles and guidelines for safe housing. 33
  33. 33. Diffusion of techniques – Public awareness • The local opinion is that the reinforced house can withstand common disasters, and this is shared as well with neighbours. The preventive strengthening of the basic structure and of the roof covering is now considered as essential measure for all the families. • Building safer means some extra-cost (10-25% of the building value) that some could still consider as unnecessary, but whilst the additional cost of achieving a safe house is an important issue.. • However, the dissemination of some specific techniques, such as concrete ribs on tiled roofs, can be more difficult for other reasons, for example that people think that such measures goes against the perception of the “beauty” of the home. 34
  34. 34. Recommendations Housing as a process, not only as a product • After a disaster, reconstruction is still too often considered as a question of delivering shelter in the form of a number of complete (or core) houses to a number of ‘victim’ families with the associated major constraints of logistics, the supply of building materials, and project planning. Housing is to often seen only as a product, akin to water filters or bags of rice… to be transferred to a population by international (or national) organisations, “shelter consultants” and projects managers most of whom know very little about community driven construction processes. Within this, integration of safer construction processes and techniques is too often neglected, and too often rebuilding does not integrate safer building. • Housing has to be considered as a process, and although it can be seen as a complicated process and one that in all cases includes many actors and many components. It remains that, in reconstruction, concerned families must be at the centre of the process that is adopted. A process that considers how the family lived before the disaster, how they would like to live in the future, on what is the importance of different spaces in the home (private, semi-private, public), on the social position of the house in local society, and on what are the relations between families and local builders, with local authorities, with lending agencies, etc. are that all have an input into the building process. • The houses design phase has to be done with local “technicians”, who may be architects or even more often, local builders, to ensure that designs will be fully appropriated by and appropriate for the family. Flexibility in design, adaptation to local architectural styles and a capacity to work with families are all essential for the appropriation of the techniques that make for a safe house. “Participatory design” may take time and can appear to make it difficult to achieve a synthesis of different needs. • In addition, in housing implementation, we have considered that construction should be supervised not only by projects but also by families who invariably do this strictly. It implies that post disaster reconstruction should be accompanied by training and public campaigns on safer house designed to resist identified hazards.
  35. 35. DRR in reconstruction “Building safer and better” • Integrating Disaster Risk Reduction in reconstruction is, surprisingly, not always considered a priority, because response is too often based on the rapid delivery of houses to rehouse people in as short a time as possible. • A major concern is resilience after one event is seriously undermined if measures for safe use of reconstruction materials have not been provided along with materials. A DWF survey after Typhoon Pablo (Mindanao Island, December 2012) showed that reconstruction work was not integrating basic cyclone resistant features in reconstruction • DRR in construction needs to develop and apply key principles of safe construction that reflect local practice, materials and build on local know-how as a starting point; linked to appropriate material for training and disseminating safer construction techniques amongst the local community of builders and technicians. This implies that whilst principle of safety can be transferred from one place to another, actual technical and practical solutions have to be developed locally and not brought from other places and countries. Funding and transparency • Most of DWF programmes implemented by DWF have been made with “cash grants”, mostly because in the case of Vietnam, after a disaster, the local market for construction (materials, builders…) is not totally disrupted. • Allocation depends of the local situation (what hazards) and technical constraints (example in flooding areas the need for high foundations), the composition and capacity of each affected family (number persons, possible family contribution), to achieve a safe house. In the DWF Vietnam experience, families have been shown to be conscientious about managing the purchase for materials and construction labour.
  36. 36. Support by specialist social workers ? • Frequently in the immediate aftermath of a disaster, organisations prepare programmes and plans, to rebuild affected or destroyed communities based on a sectorial approach, each with its own sectorial specialists for health, water, food, cleaning, education, shelter, logistic (often from abroad) and each evaluating the way to cover immediate and long term needs of the communities in a specific sector and each working in a degree of isolation. • Neither families nor communities see vulnerability in a sectorial manner, not do they consider achieving safety as being a sectorial issue. They link all their issues, and decide what to do or what can be done on a broad base and based on capacity and a range of priorities. The house is not considered as priority n° 1, but the survey confirms that the safer house leads to savings (and thus to many other things) to better health and more besides; thus decision making about reconstruction and priorities is also not purely a financial or technical issue. • The DWF team has worked as a group over many years. Despite the fact that the team is made up of social workers, people with communication skills, as well as architects and engineers, the staff are encouraged to operate as a team and through this, to individually develop more holistic skills that improve their ability to interact with families and communities and with community and more senior leaders. We have worked to avoid developing a sectorial view of families and their built environment • For Vietnam, DWF made another choice, to mix all these “specialities” into one team developing a holistic view of family and community capacity, the risk and needs, and the construction solutions and communication methods that would suit this context, bringing together and complementing different skills to create a good capacity to communicate with family, evaluate works to be done and to supervise, animate training or public campaign for safe housing; and calculate the costs of actions.
  37. 37. Post reconstruction evaluation • As the origin of this study was the evaluation that housing programmes are considered as ‘finished’, when the house key is given to the family and the report to the donor completed and sent, with little subsequent assessment to see how well the product worked. • Long term post disaster reconstruction evaluations are quite rare. Generally only made in case of extreme events with long term reconstruction (such as after the Tsunami 2004 in Asia) where there has been a lot of learning opportunity, which provide various reports on the necessity for a “better approach”. But unfortunately it remains that when the next extreme disaster happens, very few people will take past experience into sufficient account Haiti being a case in point. Except for a better organisation of speciality sectorial cluster. • Once could request that organisations who looks for new funding be asked to submit how they will apply (independent) recommendations based on the evaluation of previous programmes. 38
  38. 38. Development Workshop France DW France John Norton B.P. 13 82110 Lauzerte France DW Viet Nam Guillaume Chantry 21 Ngoc Anh Phu Thuong – Phu Vang Thua Thien Hué Province, Viet Nam dwvn@dwf.org www.dwf.org Financed by: IFRC (2010, 2013), European Commission Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (ECHO/DIPECHO) (2003 – 2013), Ford Foundation (2008 – 2013) CIDA IHA (2000 – 2002)