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  • Md. Manjurul Islam, Dhaka College

YouthMapping for Community Based Disaster Risk Reduction

Now the world is fetching different types of Natural disasters because the climate is changing. As mappers, we cannot directly reduce the climate change but minimize. Unplanned urbanization and industrialization is the main reason of climate change. We can also contribute by mapping. All types of work are possible by using OpenStreetMap data. Like development work, disaster preparedness, relief distribution, rehabilitation, resilience, health and medical support etc. There are many vulnerable and disaster prone areas in the world which are unmapped. Like Coastal areas, Islands, Hill tracts, disconnected remote area. For this reason the people of the community are always in risk. So community mapping is must. At the very beginning we form a community OpenStreetMap team, though this task is not so easy. For this reason we can contact to the local social organization or community leader. They can help us to build OSM team. Then we trained them. Then they map the area, collect data and upload the data in the OSM server. When the local communities map the area they provide real data and also they will aware about their weakness, resources and safety area that will increase their awareness. And different NGOs and Government can work for disaster risk reduction and development. They also can work as Community Based Disaster Response Team member. In 26-31 May, 2018 I along with some mappers of YouthMappers Dhaka College visited a small Island beside Jamuna River under Sirajgang district of Bangladesh and map that area.

Natural disaster is a common phenomenon in Bangladesh. Among different disasters flood is one of the biggest threat for people who are living beside the coastal area, river and Island. With the support of IFRC, Bangladesh Red Crescent Society runs different project in these areas for Disaster Risk Reduction, Preparedness and Resilience etc. In Khasbaroshimul, Sirajgang is a flood prone small Island on Jamuna River. With the support of IFRC, BDRCS runs Community Based Disaster Risk Reduction (CBDRR) / R2R project. At the end of the project we mapped the project area and upload data in OpenStreetMap

From 25-30 May, 2018 we visited the place and mapped the area by using GPS and fieldpapers and collect data from door to door with the support of local community. In the map we include data about household its condition (based on flood lasting and floor height), material, level, address etc. We indicate the important places like School, Cyclone Centre, Mosque etc. we marked the river erosion area. We draw roads, path and indicated where the roads/embankment were broken and flood water enter the locality easily. We tag the point as water entry point. We also add some special tag about flood signal, CDRT (community disaster response team) member, doctor, veterinary doctor, datri/midwife etc. According to its geographical location we marked this area as flood prone. They people of this community live from hand to mouth. Most of the people are farmer and day labor. They are struggling for their livelihood. They need more support.

In this respect, YouthMappers all over the world can contribute and work as a community change maker.

Md. Manjurul Islam is a 2017 YouthMappers Leadership Fellow. Read his previous contributions to the YouthMappers blog here and here. He is very much interested in humanitarian work. In his free time, he participates in mapping activities and trying to contribute towards the development of the unprivileged.

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