Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, FAO

Anticipatory action and social protection

Climate and human-induced disasters, threaten lives, livelihoods and food security. Smallholder farmers are among the most vulnerable to shocks, some of which are predictable. It is our collective duty to find smarter ways to reduce the impact of disasters by combining anticipatory action with social protection. Anticipatory action mitigates the impact of disasters by reacting to early warning systems to protect lives and livelihoods ahead of a shock. Rural families are appropriately equipped to secure their crops, protect their animals, and prepare for disasters. Social protection systems provide relief by addressing economic, environmental and social vulnerabilities to curb food insecurity and poverty. National strategies consisting of social assistance like cash transfers, social insurance schemes such as agricultural insurance, and labor market interventions like employment guarantees can help to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable households. FAO is joining forces with partners to link anticipatory action and social protection to ensure that the most vulnerable communities get cost-effective, inclusive and sustainable support before a crisis strikes. Why react to disasters, if we can protect communities ahead of time?