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Project identification

Common problems/challenges

EU's Green Paper – Adapting to climate change in Europe – stresses the increased risks of damage to people, infrastructure and environment due to climate change and draws attention to the need for early action and policy response. Today, as also raised in the “IPA II Cross-Border Programme Greece - Albania 2014-2020”, natural and manmade disasters pose considerable challenges to sustainable development  in this particular CB area. In particular fires and floods are increasing having trans-boundary impacts which make a common approach essential. Though prevention is gaining increased importance in both countries, strategic guidance on how to support PwD/older persons is lacking leaving them completely exposed to multiple hazards.

The results of the first-ever UN global survey of PwD on how they cope with disasters (UNISDR 2013 Survey on Living with Disabilities and Disasters), illustrates that 85.57% of the respondents from 137 countries state that they have not participated in community disaster management and risk reduction processes, 72.20% of respondents do not have a personal preparedness plan in the event of a disaster. They also cite the creation of a national/community register of those who may need assistance in an emergency including other key data on PWDs also and stress training for all emergency workers in augmentative and alternative communication skills.

Project approach and solutions

Under the light of the above, the main objective of the 4Plus Project is to promote the joint development of Inclusive Practices for Effective Civil Protection of High Risk Society Groups in the CB Area.
The Project shall act catalytically towards the development of new and the improvement of the existing CV plans to better integrate and address the needs of PwD/older persons in the cases of natural and manmade crises and disasters whereas public health emergencies or acts of terrorism will not be addressed. The human rights approach gains special importance in the context of 4Plus, where a particular group of vulnerable people, the disabled population, are the subject of the rescue procedures as well as they participate and are actively involved in all the phases of the rescue processes making interventions more sustainable and with more legitimacy.

In particular, the proposal taking into account integrated methods aimed at promoting the development of actions at four levels of civil protection:

  1. at the planning level: 4Plus’s goal is to identify and localize the needs and challenges in the area and record necessary infrastructure and services needed to assist in the best way the above groups during each event of natural or technological crisis and disaster.
  2. on prevention and preparedness level: The goal is to organize accessible residents’ campaigns for CV actions, to improve the capacity of all parties potentially involved in crisis and disaster prevention and management, and to develop a relationship of trust between them.
  3. in terms of response level: The goal is to organize and implement -as pilot actions- emergency preparedness and relief exercises concerning PwD/older persons.
  4. in the rehabilitation level: Project’s goal is to coordinate exercises of the intervention teams, in order to record and repair the damage and to record long-term needs and assistance to those affected.

Main target-group and direct beneficiaries

A. Main target group: Persons with any kind of disabilities, older persons and their families.

B. Direct beneficiaries throughout the CB area: regional and local CV agencies and units, organisations dealing in rescue operations including volunteers, policy makers, representative organisations of the target group, local population benefiting from all-inclusive measures.

The institutional involvement of the LB in relevant policy making activities at all levels (see sec. B.3.1) and previous cooperation between the LB and regional and local authorities of the CB area, led to this proposal idea, which was then further developed with the contribution of all partners, selected after taking into consideration their interest, jurisdiction and competence in relation to the vision in question.