CWS Asia


Disaster Response

CWS distributing tarpaulin to make shelters during Central Sulawesi earthquake response (in Indonesia). Photo: CWS

Water supply support from CWS team (in Indonesia) during Central Sulawesi earthquake response. Photo: CWS

CWS staff share emergency hygiene kits and water tanks with people affected by flash flooding and landslides in Mu Cang Chai, Vietnam. Photo: CWS

Japan’s Ecumenical Taskforce for SAIGAI (disaster) responds to Kyushu Island floods. Photo: CWS

CWS is engaged at the “disaster frontline” by actively working with the local communities on preparedness and response programs. At the global level, we actively network with the most influential disaster risk reduction organizations to advocate for better and stronger comprehensive policies.

We have developed a 3-pillar approach to reduce a community’s exposure to disasters and improve their resilience:

1. Community-based activities
From raising awareness to contributing to preparedness measures, hazard mapping and mitigation plans, CWS is working closely with communities to ensure that disaster risk reduction is a sustainable, integrated and community accepted concept leading to concrete improvements and strengthening community resilience.

2. Education and capacity building initiatives
Based on the belief that knowledge and interest lead to desire and action, we integrate disaster risk reduction education into school curriculum in close cooperation with local and central governments.

3. Advocacy
CWS and our partners jointly advocate for improved disaster risk reduction policies at international and local levels. We are active at international conferences and global platforms while also facilitating better policy practices and addressing implementation gaps at the local level.

Latest News

Typhoon Hagibis Japan Situation Report #3

CWS Japan | November 8, 2019

The effects of Typhoon Hagibis, which made landfall in Japan on October 12, 2019, continues to be felt by thousands of vulnerable in the country’s central regions. Widespread torrential rains that, in just two days produced 30%-40% of Japan’s usual annual rainfall, combined with strong winds, flooding and landslides led to Category 5 warnings to […]

Typhoon Hagibis Situation Report #2

CWS Japan | October 28, 2019

Typhoon Hagibis has devastated already disaster-hit areas, including Tateyama in Chiba where Typhoon Faxai hit last month. In addition, several days of heavy rain followed Typhoon Hagibis and worsened conditions in already hard-hit communities. Blue plastic sheets that were used to cover damaged roofs are already damaged and becoming ineffective; communities must re-do the temporary […]

CWS Hosts a Successful Sphere Standards Workshop for ACT Myanmar Forum and Other Partners

CWS Myanmar | October 27, 2019

Since 1997, Sphere Standards have guided humanitarian response globally. Updated and expanded standards published in 2018 spurred CWS to organize a workshop to update all staff, some of whom are new to humanitarian work and its high standards requirements. In all 14 humanitarian response professionals from CWS, other ACT Alliance Members and local non-government organizations […]

ACT Alliance Teamwork Accelerates Flood Response Impact in Southeast Myanmar

CWS Myanmar | October 26, 2019

Eight feet of flood waters during a two-week period in August disrupted lives in riverside towns along the Zami River in Karen State of southeast Myanmar. CWS responded to the Karen Baptist Convention (KBC) appeal for help by supporting 187 people in Htee Pa Htaw Hto village as part of the KBC coordinated relief for […]

Building a House into a Home

CWS Indonesia | October 25, 2019

Delti watched as her house crumbled to the ground on September 28th in 2018 as a 7.8 magnitude earthquake hit Palu, Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. While running to find safety, all Delti thought about was how her life would change completely – if she even survived the disaster. Delti was one of about 212,000 people displaced […]

Typhoon Hagibis Situation Report #1

CWS Japan | October 20, 2019

Typhoon Hagibis made landfall in Japan on October 12, 2019. Widespread torrential rains, strong winds and subsequent flooding and landslides followed in many parts of central Japan. The ACT Forum Japan has called for skilled volunteers, and an operations base is being created in partnership with Operation Blessing Japan, which will support volunteer dispatch. CWS […]

Typhoon Hagibis Hits Japan: Disaster Update

CWS Japan | October 15, 2019

SITUATION Typhoon Hagibis made landfall in Japan on October 12 and led to widespread flooding and landslides in many parts of central Japan. In just two days the typhoon brought 30-40% of the annual rainfall to areas, and the highest warning level (category 5: do whatever it takes to save your life) was issued in […]

Using Basic Soil Science to Inform Drought Risk Reduction Planning

CWS Japan | October 3, 2019

With plans to use lessons learned from a continuing project in Pakistan, CWS Japan team members are happy to report strong results from working with Japan Conservation Engineers, Co. Ltd. and strong community leaders in drought risk reduction project in Sindh Province in Pakistan. The project’s aim is to detect underground water using Electronic Resistance […]

Community Volunteers Like Andi Tuo Are Sustainable Change Makers

CWS Indonesia |

Andi Tuo is a volunteer Community Health Promoter in Palu, Central Sulawesi, where an earthquake, tsunami and land liquefaction devastated her town and dozens of surrounding villages last year. In mid-August, Andi and her colleagues joined a CWS-led skills training to support their work in a community-led total sanitation (CLTS) initiative led by Indonesia’s Ministry […]

Indonesia Earthquake Anniversary | CWS Response

CWS Indonesia | September 28, 2019

A year ago, a horrific series of disasters struck Central Sulawesi, Indonesia. The earthquake, tsunamis and liquefaction killed more than 5,300 people and wiped out communities. CWS have been on the ground in Central Sulawesi for the past year helping to address critical water, sanitation, hygiene and shelter needs. This video gives a glimpse at […]

CWS Releases a New Disaster Response, Recovery and Resilience Report

CWS Japan | September 24, 2019

“Towards Mabi Recovery – Lessons One Year On” builds on Church World Service (CWS) earlier findings as reported in “Six Months Since Western Japan Flood: Lessons From Mabi”. That report highlighted 10 key findings about the relief phase of CWS and partners’ work: flood risk communication, infrastructure measures, early warning, evacuation and emergency behavior, shelter […]

Lesson Learned: Don’t Take Water for Granted!

CWS Indonesia | August 26, 2019

Like many people in the world, Diana used to take water for granted. Now, after the complex natural disaster changed her life last year, she understands how valuable and rare safe water can be. Diana lived in a coastal village near Palu in Central Sulawesi. But when an earthquake and resulting tsunami washed her home […]

Another Lesson Learned: Don’t Forget the Basics

CWS Indonesia |

Adapting to life after a natural disaster is a struggle. For people like Sarini the struggle isn’t just coping with the huge loss of her house and livelihood. It’s also the struggle to meet basic needs day in and day out. Immediately after last September’s earthquake, tsunami and land liquefaction disaster in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia, […]

Central Sulawesi Disaster Recovery Continues with Cash for Families to Rebuild and Renew

CWS Indonesia | July 31, 2019

Recently, people from Donggala district, which was devastated by an earthquake and tsunami in late September 2018, receive money to support them in the next steps of their recovery from the disaster that upended their lives. The payments to families were made through what is called a cash transfer program, and such programs are increasingly […]

Moving, Regrouping and Dreaming for a Better Life

CWS Indonesia | June 18, 2019

Although she is not originally from the area, Nirwana Sai is now among tens of thousands of Central Sulawesi (Indonesia) earthquake and tsunami survivors. Somewhat ironically (or so it seems now) Nirwana, her husband and four kids left their home in South Sulawesi to look for a better life. Both parents were working toward that […]

A Silver Lining to the Dark Cloud of Last Fall’s Central Sulawesi Earthquake

CWS Indonesia | June 16, 2019

September 28, 2018 started as a normal Friday, a non-workday, for Stofan as he enjoyed a game of football with his friends and spent some quality time with his oldest son. Then, the day became far from normal as the earth shook and the land moved when an earthquake hit. Luckily, Stofan was close to […]

The Weight of Water

CWS Indonesia | May 26, 2019

Rahmayanti, or Tanti as her friends call her, is much like any other 16-year-old girl. She enjoys spending time with her friends and studying. Yet, unlike most teenage girls, Tanti recently experienced something that most 16-year-olds couldn’t imagine: the consequences of a complex natural disaster when an earthquake that struck in Central Sulawesi, Indonesia in […]

Community Networks Building a More Prepared Future

CWS Indonesia |

In early March, 45 community leaders from five in Central Sulawesi villages started their community disaster preparedness networks by considering natural disaster threats in each of their villages. After discussing as many aspects of natural disasters they have experienced or heard about, the women and men in the room put their ideas for contingency action […]

Women in Central Sulawesi Keep Organizing as Change Agents for Improved Hygiene

CWS Indonesia | April 8, 2019

Six months after the deadly earthquake and tsunami that hit Palu, thousands of people, like 42-year-old Juarni, continue working day in and day out to cope with displacement. When the late September 2018 disaster hit, Juarni was an active health post worker who loved her job. After the crisis’ early days, and as life settled […]

“Lessons from Mabi” Report Related: Following Up on 2018 Western Japan Flood Response

CWS Japan | March 29, 2019

In July 2018, western Japan experienced once-in-decades torrential rains, which led to widespread flooding and landslides. Eight months on from CWS intense engagement in immediate response activities, many families have yet to fully recover from the disaster, and no families will ever be the same after the devastation. So, while follow-up with families through partner […]

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