Cross-sector collaboration for climate resilience

Location South Africa
Sustainable Development Goal Partnership for the Goals

Project timeline 

"Project is 0.8164287503% completed "

The Challenge

South and Southern Africa have run a gauntlet of disasters in recent years, from cyclones and flooding to mega-fires and drought. These events have devastated human lives and livelihoods, infrastructure, local economies and the environment and exposed the under-preparedness of various levels of government and civil society to manage the threats of climate change, natural disasters and a widening insurance protection gap. Moreover, organisations that can potentially contribute to climate change and disaster management solutions, including NGOs, the private sector and government, work largely in their own silos.

The Approach

This project will see the establishment of the Climate and Disaster Resilience Fund (CDRF) as an independently driven, society-wide response to the escalating risk of climate disaster, which accounts for the largest percentage of disaster-related losses in South Africa – where the CDRF will begin its work before expanding to the rest of Southern Africa.

The first organisation of its kind, the CDRF will bring together thought leaders on climate change and disasters both from NGOs and the private sector as well as from South Africa’s national and provincial governments. Together, they will pool data and knowledge, share resources and implement initiatives that promote nature-based solutions, build ecosystems and community resilience and help close the protection gap. CDRF will focus specifically on fire, flooding and drought.

Our support will be used over a two-year period to create the CDRF and to scale up two already piloted projects in South Africa:

  • Rolling out the Green Book – a climate change planning and adaptation toolkit – at the municipal level in collaboration with the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research.
  • Implementing the Fire Station Capacity Application, which uses the ArcGIS spatial mapping and location analytics platform to collect data on fire services, enabling accurate classification of fire services capacity and thus better risk planning and mitigation.

Goals and Expected Impact

The main goals of this project are to:

  • Establish the CDRF (aligned with UN Sustainable Development Goal 17)
  • Afford 30 million people access to information on climate change assessments and possible adaptation strategies
  • Provide improved fire services to 10 million people by enabling 30 municipalities to increase their fire services capacity


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Our partner

Established in 2021, the Climate and Disaster Resilience Fund (CDRF) has been operating informally since 2017. It is the first national, multi-sector and multi-functional organisation to bring together diverse government and non-government partners in the climate and disaster sector. Committed to using the best scientific data available and implementing projects efficiently, the CDRF is underpinned by collaboration, resource-sharing and research. Its work will initially focus on South Africa and later expand to other geographies in Southern Africa.

Climate and Disaster Resilience Fund (CDRF)

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