On Shifting Ground

Each year the world sees between 30 and 50 major natural disasters that take countless lives and cause billions of dollars in damage, and many of these natural disasters spiral into humanitarian crises. NGOs and aid agencies are often the most visible face of the international community’s response to such crises, but are they best suited to respond to emergencies of such magnitude? Charles MacCormack, the president of Save the Children, will address these questions and suggest that while NGOs can be simple in motive, it is their dedication to narrow goals that allows them to address issues often over looked by governments or larger organizations. Though “success” is a relative term during periods of disaster and can be hard to measure, MacCormack argues that significant improvements can be seen in the survival rates when there is good communication between organizations as well as long-term recovery goals. In the wake of such natural disasters as the earthquake in Haiti and the floods in Pakistan, can NGOs help to mitigate the causes and consequences of future humanitarian crises?

Direct download: 2_15_11_Charles_MacCormack.mp3
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