With the support of USAID, Mercy Corps and our partners conducted a Strategic Resilience Assessment in Karamoja, Uganda to identify which groups are most vulnerable to shocks and stresses, and the resilience capacities people need to learn and adapt.
Mercy Corps works in places characterized by fragility and crisis, where the impacts of shocks and stresses threaten people’s ability to get ahead. Through shared analysis, learning and action, our Resilience Approach helps communities identify and address underlying vulnerabilities, minimize exposure to risks and strengthen resilience capacities to achieve positive, inclusive change.
Resilience thinking deepens our collective understanding of complex and dynamic systems and the people who rely on them. To help navigate the uncertainty and unpredictability inherent in these systems, we regularly revisit a set of guiding resilience questions (illustrated above in yellow):
- What boundaries and systems shape a community’s development?
- What goals do communities have for their future?
- What shocks and stresses threaten these goals?
- Which groups are most vulnerable to these threats, and why?
- What capacities will help people cope with and adapt to these threats, and transform their future?
As illustrated in Figure 1, answering these questions enables our teams and partners to design resilient development strategies that adapt as contexts shift, helping us learn how to support vulnerable rural and urban communities in achieving their long-term goals.
Because we recognize that an effective approach to resilience must take into account differences due to gender and identity, we have invested in research and toolkits to better understand and apply important principles around the intersection of gender, inclusion, and resilience.
Our Strategic Resilience Assessment (STRESS)
Mercy Corps developed the Strategic Resilience Assessment (STRESS) methodology (pictured above in blue) to help practitioners use resilience thinking to prevent instability from derailing communities’ progress toward humanitarian and development objectives. STRESS enables teams to analyze their contexts and develop resilience theories of change, which allow teams to create more robust strategies and targeted interventions that support communities in achieving long-term well-being outcomes and transformational change.
Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Uganda: East Africa Resilience Capacity Statement
Mercy Corps has been working on resilience-based programming in East Africa since 2004, with a current portfolio of over $180 million in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda and South Sudan.
Resilience in East Africa
Mercy Corps has been working on resilience-based programming in East Africa since 2004.
Somalia: What Really Matters for Resilience?
What really matters for resilience?
Resilience, development and disaster risk reduction
This paper strives to explain the relationship between disaster risk reduction (DRR) interventions, development programming and a focus on building resilience.
Ethiopia: Lessons for Effective Resilience Programs
The RAIN Learning Study, Lessons for Effective Resilience Programs: a case study of the RAIN program in Ethiopia explores how innovative elements of the RAIN program design, (namely the combination
Resilience at Mercy Corps
For Mercy Corps, resilience is defined as the capacity of communities in complex socio-ecological systems to learn, cope, adapt, and transform in the face of shocks and stresses.
Myanmar: Video: Building Community Resilience for Food Security in Myanmar
Since February 2011, MC Myanmar has partnered with 8,800 food insecure households in 80 villages in Mandalay, Rakhine, and Chin States to implement its "Building Community Resilience for Food Secur
Resilience Meets Disaster Economics (blog posting)
Investing to stop disasters before they start can save lives and money.
Niger: Tracking Resilience in Niger
This post-project independent evaluation of Mercy Corps' Market Improvements and Innovative Linkages (MILK) program in Niger tracks resilience outcomes among program participants from the completio
Climate Change and City Development: engaging local government in resilience building
Local governments play a leading role in building city resilience.