MAINSTREAMING CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION IN AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION
them in a different way? Do they have other sorts of skills or resources? What
resources are available to be drawn on in building resilience?
Which institutions and policies are important in ensuring that livelihoods are
sustainable and able to cope with and recover from hazards? Don‟t just think
about those institutions that respond after a hazard has struck – but rather
think about those that ensure that people are not vulnerable in the first place.
Which institutions are doing positive work in the area that could be further
strengthened or replicated? Which institutions are always available for support,
not only when disaster strikes? Think about specific opportunities for
influencing: is there a visit from someone in a relevant institution who could be
approached? Is there a policy process which could be fed into?
How will people be able to cope with long-term uncertainty? Climate change
might bring unpredictable situations, never experienced before. Will people
have the ability to experiment and adapt to changing circumstances? Where
will they obtain relevant information and guidance? Will they be able to access
updated forecasts that can guide their decision making?
Assessing the capacities of people at risk is an important step in choosing strategies
for building resilience. Building on existing strengths ensures that existing and
traditional coping strategies are not undermined but reinforced. If the resources and
resourcefulness which exist in communities and households are ignored when
designing risk reduction measures, existing coping methods may be weakened
leading to increased vulnerability. The information can be recorded in a table as
Task: Identify the capacities found in your “communities” or the case studies.
Are these coping strategies or adaptive strategies? What is the difference?
Suggest how these could be used in building adaptive capacity or resilience
Suggest ways of improving or increasing the capacities of your communities.
A Training Manual on Use of Climate Information and Vulnerability and Capacity Assessment for
Agricultural Extension Staff in Zimbabwe