Women learn to invest in flood preparedness


ICIMOD, in partnership with the Institute of Integrated Resource Management (IIRM) and Swayam Sikshyan Prayog (SSP), conducted flood preparedness training for 240 women in eight villages of Lakhimpur district in Assam, India, from 12–20 March 2015. The women came from remittance recipient households. 

The training was part of the action research initiated under ICIMOD’s Himalayan Climate Change Adaptation Programme (HICAP). This research examines the role of trainings in enhancing the financial literacy and flood preparedness of remittance recipient households in the flood-affected areas of Lakhimpur district. 

Male outmigration is common in Lakhimpur district. When the men leave, women face additional pressures and responsibilities in the household and community. They have to assume new roles for disaster preparedness, food security and farm management, for which they are often unprepared. Women do not have equal access to markets, extension services, and government programmes as men. In the absence of men, women need to acquire new skills, capacities, and knowledge to deal with the new challenges.

During the training, participants learned how to utilize their household income and savings for flood preparedness plans, improved cooking stoves, safe drinking water, emergency food storage, and flood preparedness calendar. The first phase of the training, which focused on financial literacy, had been conducted in December 2014. Back then, participants had learned how to use their household income and remittances purposefully, plan a monthly budget, and save for future.