From the Field

How and where World Vision is responding to disasters

World Vision is on the ground before, during, and after disasters to help children and families not just cope, but thrive.

Disasters are devastating events in the lives of people who are impoverished. Recent crises are not only affecting more people but also are lasting longer, an average of nine years. Most long-term crises, like that originating from Syria, are caused by conflict, though natural disasters also play a large part in displacing people and causing suffering. World Vision is a deep-rooted and active member of society in each of the nearly 100 countries where we work — positioned to immediately respond to disasters. We are on the ground before, during, and after a disaster to help children and families not just cope, but thrive.

Your generous gifts helped World Vision assist 16 million children and their families affected by 143 disasters and emergencies in 44 countries in 2018. In the United States alone, more than 230,000 disaster survivors also benefited from our programs. Explore the map to learn more about our largest recent responses.

Like an all-in-one tool, World Vision staff combine the unique skills and expertise needed to address complex issues of disaster relief and recovery. We provide effective solutions that help families and communities not only recover but also be better prepared to face future risks.

Autumn 2019 World Vision Magazine_chart of how World Vision does disaster response.

Depending on the situation and needs of the community, our holistic response may address:

  • Water, sanitation, and hygiene
  • Food assistance, then food security
  • Shelter
  • Child protection
  • Livelihoods and income generation
  • Health
  • Social cohesion/peacebuilding
  • Disaster risk reduction

We may also use cash-equivalent cards, which are used in contexts where goods are locally available and markets are functioning and accessible. They are not only efficient and cost-effective, but they also give families more independence and choices.


Chris Huber and Kathryn Reid of World Vision’s staff in the U.S. contributed to this article.

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