#NoNaturalDisasters: Changing the narrative on disasters for philanthropy


1 p.m. ET / 12 p.m. CT

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How we think and talk about disasters influences our responses, including decisions on what crises and communities to support, and how and when we provide critical philanthropic resources.

By continuing to use the phrase natural disasters, we position disasters as something we cannot control and have no influence over. Dr. Ilan Kelman, author of the book, “Disasters by Choice,” says that the phrase “natural disaster” is inaccurate and creates a sense of helplessness. Rather, he says, “Disasters come from vulnerability, not from hazards originating in nature.”

We invite you to join a conversation between Dr. Kelman and Tiffany Benjamin, CEO of the Humana Foundation and CDP board president, as they explore what it means for donors to stop thinking of disasters as “natural.”

At the end of this webinar, donors will:

  • Understand why it’s time to stop calling disasters “natural.”
  • Expand their thinking on the links between climate change and disasters.
  • Discover why a shift in narrative on disasters can change philanthropic decision-making on when, why and how to conduct disaster giving.

While primarily aimed at funders, it may also interest emergency managers, government staff, academics, disaster responders and nongovernmental organization staff who are interested in or working on disasters and other crises.

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Special guests:

Automatic closed captioning will be available via Zoom during the webinar. The webinar will be recorded and posted on this page. We will email the link to the fully captioned recording to everyone who registered.

CDP is striving to increase the accessibility of its webinars. Please email Katie Huang and let us know what accommodations you need by July 1; we will do our best to meet your needs as feasible.

Photo: Ariel survey of damage in northern Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria, Sept. 26, 2017 . U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Nicholas Dutton)