The India Meteorological Department (IMD) and Indian Red Cross Society (IRCS) will start sharing weather and forecast information for making communities more resilient to disasters and health epidemics. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed to this effect earlier this month.
“IMD will collaborate with IRCS to raise awareness on weather monitoring and forecasting as part of a community-based preparedness programme of IRCS in the identified districts,” Dr. M Mohapatra, Head of Indian Meteorological Department, said.
“IRCS and IMD will work to make weather and forecast data easy to understand and actionable for the community,” said Shri R K Jain, Secretary General, Indian Red Cross Society, National Headquarters.
“In addition to its central mandate of humanitarian response during emergencies and disasters, Indian Red Cross Society is involved in creating community resilience at state, district and block levels. This partnership will allow both the organisations to create informed and resilient communities,” Shri Jain added.
Among the highlights of this partnership are proposed initiatives at the district level for an impact-based forecast on extreme weather events like a heatwave, cold wave, heavy or deficient rain leading to floods, droughts etc. and its integration into community-level plans.
With its Integrated Risk Management approach, IRCS routinely organises Training of Trainers who in turn go deeper into their communities to build capacity under the Partners for Resilience programme. Officials and experts from IMD will serve as resource persons at such training at national, state and district levels.
Building on the intensive outreach that the Red Cross volunteers have at grassroots levels, IRCS and IMD will work jointly to improve communication of weather forecasts and warnings, especially in the vulnerable communities.