WOMEN’S DISASTER MANAGEMENT CAPACITIES: A QUALITATIVE STUDY OF FLOOD-AFFECTED AREAS OF SINDH, PAKISTAN
Keywords:Women, disaster management, women’s coping capacities, gender and floods, Sindh
Climate-induced disaster frequency has increased over time. Pakistan experiences abnormal rainfall that causes riverine and flash flooding. A flood-hit country’s disaster management mainly depends on the coping capacities of its population. Women are disadvantaged and considered an afterthought during disaster management planning. This article critically reflects on the barriers women in Pakistan face during disaster management, their roles and the assistance they need to improve their coping capacity. The study was conducted in two flood-affected districts of the province of Sindh. Twenty women were interviewed. NVIVO software and an Excel spreadsheet helped in the thematic analysis of the primary data generated by the interviews. According to the findings of the study, women consider a lack of knowledge, skills and social norms as the main barriers to their coping capacity. Women also perceive their role as caregivers, need providers, and helpers in the repairing and reconstructing of ruined homes and other infrastructures during disaster management as significant. The conclusion discusses the implications of the findings about policy planners and institutions for disaster management and the dire need for early warning systems and improvement in institutional aid distribution systems that are equally accessible to women as men.
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Copyright (c) 2023 Falak Shad Memon
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