VSO’s vision is that of a world where all people, especially the poor and marginalised, are able to fulfill their fundamental human rights to health, well-being and security, despite facing hazards from climate change. This means that communities everywhere have the resilience to withstand climate change impacts over the short-term and the capacity to adapt to increasing or changing hazards and impacts over the longer-term. Necessary actions to realise this vision include not only the provision of resources—social, financial, and technological—to communities at the forefront of climate change impacts, but also efforts that contribute to a dramatic reduction in the emissions that cause climate change.
VSO will ensure that the development activities we undertake today do not inadvertently make communities more vulnerable to climate change impacts tomorrow. Instead, VSO will integrate climate change considerations, present and future, into our programmes.
As we strengthen our work to respond to climate change, we will focus on four key aspects:
building adaptive capacity to climate change at the community level – by working with local communities to strengthen their ability to respond to climate change and with government to influence policy development
integrating climate change into our existing programmes – recognising its potential for impact upon any thematic area – health, education, livelihoods, HIV and AIDS
gender sensitivity, gender equity and gender equality – recognising that climate change affects men and women differently, and the potential to magnify gender inequality by exacerbating differences between men and women
bringing people together using a range of volunteering and knowledge sharing approaches to share ideas, experiences, expertise and perspectives