This guide aims to ensure that Red Cross Red Crescent disaster response is consistent and of high quality and enables us to test and refine existing plans, integrate new partners, and orient staff and volunteers over time.

The information provided in the following chapters should be regarded as a guideline, rather than as strict rules. Planning priorities will differ according to the context and scope of the situation – whether local, national or regional. It is essential to work on response and contingency plans in consultation and cooperation with those who will have to implement or approve them.

Disaster response and contingency planning is a responsibility at all levels of the organization. The International Federation recommends that National Societies and International Federation offices develop either a multi-hazard disaster response plan with hazard-specific annexes, or several hazard specific contingency plans to cover high-risk disaster events. Many emergency management procedures are common to all disasters, regardless of the hazards involved.


This document provides an overview of the key elements of disaster response and contingency planning. The main topics covered in these guidelines include:

  • The response planning process;
  • Steps involved in developing the plan;
  • Communication and coordination of disaster response;
  • Plan implementation, training, updating and evaluation;
  • Standards, tools and templates.

Usage: Guidance for project implementation

Audience: Technical staff

For Lao Red Cross contingency planning, click here Lao contingency plan, size 0.4 MB

For Myanmar Red Cross contigency planning, click here Myanmar plan, size 0.3 MB, TOR, size 0.2 MB; Structure, size0.04 MB  Contact, size 0.07 MB

Document Data

Author: IFRC
Publication date: January 1, 2007
Status: Final Type: PDF Size (MB): Size: 2
Country: Global
Resource type: Guidelines

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