It has been 27 years since the United Nations General Assembly felt the urgency to call for an International Day for Disaster Reduction, established with the longterm objective of raising global awareness on how people are taking action to cope with disasters and tackle vulnerabilities. Today, consistent with this year’s central theme of "reducing disaster mortality" and building on its recently published resilience toolkit, the Medellin Collaboration for Urban Resilience (MCUR) reinvigorates its collective commitment to assist cities worldwide and welcomes Cities Alliance as the newest member of the group.
As the global urban population grows at a pace of 1.4 million every week, cities are clearly emerging as the realm where risk-awareness and reduction are most immediately needed. From this perspective, working across 4,000 cities globally and leveraging more than US$2 billion of existing annual funds, the Medellin Collaboration is poised to answer the challenge. Well-aligned with the major post-2015 development frameworks—the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the Paris Agreement and particularly the New Urban Agenda—its crosssector targets span from comprehensive data gathering to local government disaster preparedness, and from the development of major security standards to more efficient ecosystems services. MCUR is working to spread an understanding that risks and challenges are often interconnected—solutions should be created with this in mind and achieve multiple benefits with one intervention. Moreover, MCUR is actively pledged to investing in risk-mitigation strategies and harnessing urban opportunities.
Sharing these common goals, its diverse platform of members—which includes UNHabitat, UNISDR, The World Bank Group, Global Facility for Disaster Reduction and Recovery, IDB, The Rockefeller Foundation, 100 Resilient Cities, C40, ICLEI and Cities Alliance—originally came together in February 2014 as a successful outcome of the 7th World Urban Forum; thus giving shape and consistency to an unprecedented global momentum for resilience-building.
Through a statement, and in the advent of Habitat III, MCUR strongly reaffirms its commitment to foster resilience in every city and human settlement creating a better future for all citizens.