© Helvetas / Bikram Rana

Humanitarian Response

Helvetas provides humanitarian aid to help affected communities deal with disasters.
© Helvetas / Bikram Rana

Helvetas engages in humanitarian relief to help people in developing countries deal with disasters, making sure that the humanitarian response is combined with long-term development cooperation.

Why humanitarian response matters

Poor people struggle with day-to-day survival, and can hardly invest in the future: for example, save extra food or reinforce houses. They cannot choose where to live, and often end up building their homes on exposed coastlines, slopes and arid lands. Thus, disasters tend to take the heaviest toll on the poor.

In recent years there has been a further rise in the number and scale of disasters worldwide. One of the major causes is climate change. Droughts, floods and cyclones turn the hard-won development progress of many years and even decades to dust almost overnight.

© Helvetas /Patrick Rohr
«A new earthquake can come at any time, but in the new house, we finally feel safe.»

Daulima Sherpa, 40, a farmer and an earthquake victim who learned to build earthquake-resistant housing, Nepal

Our work

We are increasing our efforts to help our program countries deal with emergency situations. Helvetas strives to advance quickly from short-term humanitarian aid to long-term development cooperation during the relief, recovery, rehabilitation and reconstruction phases after a disaster. When a major earthquake struck Nepal in 2015, in addition to helping the most affected communities rehabilitate, Helvetas trained local people to build earthquake-resistant houses. The new skill helps them not only to decrease earthquake damage risks, but also get additional income.

Our Expertise & Services

Since 2013, we have steadily expanded our capacity to provide effective humanitarian aid in collaboration with partner organizations. We have also improved our risk analysis and established an emergency fund, which allows us to respond swiftly. Our Emergency Response team provides advisory services both to Helvetas and external clients.

Learn more and contact us

Selected Projects: Humanitarian Response

© Helvetas / Patrick Rohr
Nepal Environment and Climate Change

Fresh Start after the Earthquake