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Disasters and Emergency Response

World Vision's staff respond to natural disasters, conflicts and other emergencies in dozens of countries each year. Staff can provide eyewitness interviews, expert analysis and compelling insight into these tragic events.

Media Contacts:

Laura Blank

p 646.245.2496

Lauren Fisher

m 206.310.5476
p 206.310.5476

Subject Matter Experts:

Jeff Wright

Chris Palusky

The Latest

Up to the minute news, press releases, media and more.

In Iraq Amira,10, cares for her young sister, Aziza, 2, in front of the makeshift shelter they now must call home. Their family was torn apart by the Syria Crisis. PHOTO: World Vision / Mary Kate MacIsaac
Dec 17, 2014

World Vision to attend Berlin meeting for 3RP launch plan to address refugees, host nations

A new plan brings together the United Nations, governments, and NGOs to help the people caught in the Syria crisis.

Dr. Anne Peterson with World Vision testifies at a Senate Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on Ebola Wednesday.
Dec 15, 2014

World Vision health expert testifies at Senate hearing on Ebola

Dr. Anne Peterson, a public health expert who recently returned from West Africa, testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on gaps in the Ebola response and how local partners could better connect with the interfaith effort to stem the disease.

Indian Ocean tsunami babies born on a mountaintop
Dec 10, 2014

Indian Ocean tsunami babies born on a mountaintop

As the massive tsunami wreaked havoc on 14 countries and took lives on December 26, 2004, new lives were born. Ten years later, communities have rebuilt, and those tsunami babies are thriving.

Families seek shelter in Redemptorist Church in Tacloban after Typhoon Hagupit brought punishing wind and rain to the Philippines. PHOTO: World Vision / Joy Maluyo
Dec 7, 2014

Thousands heed mandatory evacuation in Tacloban on the heels of Hagupit; World Vision distribution starts today

World Vision provides supplies to survivors of Typhoon Hagupit in the Philippines.

Families take shelter inside evacuation centers throughout Tacloban, in advance of the approach of Typhoon Hagupit to the Philippines. PHOTO: World Vision / Cristie Macabe
Dec 6, 2014

Over half a million evicted by Hagupit: World Vision mobilizes response teams

World Vision disaster response teams are on high alert on Leyte, Samar, and Panay islands as punishing winds and rains from Typhoon Hagupit track northwest over the central Philippines.

These three children are among tens of thousands internally displaced by the conflict in South Sudan. PHOTO: World Vision / Melany Markham
Dec 5, 2014

Children in South Sudan face another Christmas far from home

Children in South Sudan face another Christmas far from home.

World Vision to provide aid in storm-tossed Philippines
Dec 11, 2014

World Vision providing aid in storm-tossed Philippines

Typhoon Hagupit struck the Philippines on December 6, barely a year after the country was hit by Typhoon Haiyan. World Vision distributed hygiene kits and water to meet the needs of 2,000 peoples in three evacuation camps in Tacloban the day following the storm’s initial landfall.

A still from a time-lapse satellite image of Typhoon Hagupit, courtesy of CYCLOCANE, shows its approach to the Philippines.
Dec 4, 2014

Over a year after Typhoon Haiyan, survivors rush to evacuation centers, bracing for impact of Typhoon Hagupit

A new super storm, Typhoon Hagupit, threatens to undo progress as families in the Philippines are still rebuilding after last year’s Super Typhoon Haiyan disaster. World Vision has mobilized its response teams in case Hagupit's impact is severe.


Fact Sheets and Extras

How we respond to global disasters (PDF)

The impact of major disasters has increased 13-fold in the last 50 years. Global weather trends and increasing political upheavals indicate that the needs will continue to grow. Immediate emergency response, disaster mitigation and a commitment to long-term rebuilding are critical. World Vision is on the ground in some 100 countries — and responded to some 87 emergencies last year.

Ready to respond: Preparing for global disasters (PDF)

In 2012, World Vision responded to some 87 disasters, assisting an estimated 10 million survivors, refugees and internally displaced people. With a 13-fold increase in the number of major disasters over the last 50 years, we continue to provide immediate emergency response and disaster mitigation, and are committed to long-term rebuilding. A significant element in World Vision’s disaster response is emergency preparedness, which includes community training as well as pre-positioned staff, goods and funds.

8 ways to talk to kids about disasters (PDF)

Given the 24-hour news cycle, children are some of the first to see or hear about tragedy and disaster around the corner or around the world. But as kids are increasingly exposed to disturbing news footage, Twitter updates and Facebook posts, they’re going to go to their parents, teachers and pastors with questions. Here are some suggestions on how to talk with children about disasters and their impact.

Disaster Response Myth #1: In a disaster response, relief efforts are uncoordinated, chaotic and haphazard (PDF)

Myths of Aid -- Disaster Response Myth #1: "In a disaster response, relief efforts are uncoordinated, chaotic and haphazard." The truth is, over recent decades, relief agencies and local governments have become more intentional about coordination. Still, gaps remain, and are intensified by the severity of the disaster; number, size, and experience level of responding agencies; and functionality of local infrastructure and services.

Disaster Response Myth #2: Aid agencies are not accountable or transparent (PDF)

Myths of Aid -- Disaster Response Myth #2: "Aid agencies are not accountable or transparent." The truth is, professional humanitarian agencies take accountability seriously. According to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ Humanitarian Code of Conduct, aid agencies are accountable to “both those we seek to assist and those from whom we accept resources.” World Vision is currently compliant with every relevant donor accountability standard.

Disaster Response Myth #3: Good intentions are enough to provide valuable help during a disaster (PDF)

Myths of Aid -- Disaster Response Myth #3: "Good intentions are enough to provide valuable help during a disaster." The truth is, in a disaster, the best people to help on the ground are those with appropriate skills and training for disaster response, those who understand the language and the context of the particular disaster, and those who have the professional training and experience to work in a disaster setting

Disaster Response Myth #4: Aid agencies should spend donations as quickly as possible to address immediate needs (PDF)

Myths of Aid -- Disaster Response Myth #4: "Aid agencies should spend donations as quickly as possible to address immediate needs." The truth is, when images of destruction and despair in the wake of a disaster are splashed across the world’s screens, the natural reaction is to want to help as many people as possible, as quickly as possible. Certainly recovery and rescue efforts must be accomplished as quickly as possible. However, aid will also be needed in the months and even years ahead; experienced aid agencies know they must plan to meet both present and future needs of a community recovering from a disaster.

Disaster Response Myth #5: The more money raised, the faster the response will happen (PDF)

Myths of Aid -- Disaster Response Myth #5: "The more money raised, the faster the response will happen." The truth is, money is not the only resource needed when it comes to a disaster response. Unfortunately, natural disasters and humanitarian crises are by their very nature complex situations which take more than money to fix. No matter how generous donors are, myriad factors can delay work in the field, from access, to local political instability, to poverty, to lack of coordination between new and inexperienced organizations.

An introduction to World Vision's Global Rapid Response Team (PDF)

The Global Rapid Response Team is a group of highly skilled professional relief practitioners from within the World Vision Partnership who can be mobilized in teams at short notice to initiate disaster responses anywhere in the world. They are dedicated to helping World Vision's national offices to respond with rapid deployment of critical expertise and supplies.

How World Vision responds to earthquakes (PDF)

World Vision’s disaster management work seeks to protect lives, restore dignity and renew hope, especially in the world’s toughest places where children need us most. With proper care and help children are resilient. Without it they risk suffering emotional and psychological consequences brought about by losing loved ones and having lives turned upside down. Getting physical aid to children quickly is key, but so is restoring a sense of safety, order and normalcy.