Red Cross/ Red Crescent Climate Centre

Early Warning, Early Action



When disasters strike, Red Cross Red Crescent volunteers are often among the first to provide relief to the victims. But in most cases, we can save more lives and reduce more suffering if we can act before a disaster. We have known for decades now that it is much more effective to evacuate people before a flood than to rescue people during the flood, or to provide relief to its victims. It is also much more effective to support farmers to find alternative livelihood options than to provide food aid when the harvest has failed. The Red Cross Red Crescent is investing more into people-centred early warning systems so that their early action (preparedness and mitigation/prevention) are suited to face the rising risks of extreme weather events as a result of climate change.


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The handbook 'Early Warning, Early Action' is developed by the IFRC and is the Red Cross Red Crescent answer to rising climate risks.

IFRC planning proces

'Early Warning, Early Action' is the overarching theme of the IFRC's planning process.

IFRC plan and budget 2009-2010.
Watch the 'Early Warning, Early Action' video on the YouTube channel of the IFRC.

Examples of 'Early Warning, Early Action (source: IFRC)

More information can be found at the 'early warning' section of the Links pages.