Coping with Drought and Climate change (CwDCC) in Ethiopia


Vulnerability analyses for Ethiopia suggest that environmental changes over the coming decades present a serious threat to economic and social sectors. 

This UNDP-supported and GEF-SCCF financed project, Coping with Drought and Climate change (CwDCC) in Ethiopia, is working to address these problems at grass roots level to build capacity of the poor rural community to cope with drought and climate change. Specifically, the project objective is to develop and pilot a range of effective coping mechanisms for reducing the vulnerability of farmers, particularly women and children in KaluWoreda/District to current and future climate shocks. The project will benefit 41,421 people (in 6 Kebeles/villages) in the KaluWoreda (District), Amhara Regional State. Replication value is expected to improve the adaptive capacity of 186,000 people in the region, which comprises the population of the other 24 Kebeles in KaluWoreda plus five other Woredas in the Afar and Amhara regions.

Scheduled to run for five years, the CwDCC projects in Ethiopia, Kenya, Mozambique and Zimbabwe are supporting effective adaptation in the agriculture sector. Regular interaction among the project teams in each country is also working to ensure peer-to-peer learning.

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Project details

Water is a specifically fragile resource with the frequency and intensity of drought projected to increase. Addressing long-term climate change is thus required to reduce the impacts on livelihoods and bolster major economic sectors such as agriculture, which is the mainstay of the country. In response, and as part of a set of three other Coping with Drought and Climate Change projects in Kenya, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, this project is working to improve the livelihood strategies and resilience of farmers. Through enhanced farming practices and improvement of community-based natural resource management, rural communities are adapting to water scarcity and drought. This project is also establishing the use of early warning systems to bolster resilience in the agricultural sector.

As already observed in recurrent droughts, climate changes such as water shortages and subsequent food insecurity are impacting Ethiopia. The country is particularly prone to drought as well as climate-driven health impacts. Projected increases in temperature and declines in rainfall for the northern half of Ethiopia will negatively affect agricultural production, deteriorate infrastructure and worsen the livelihoods of the rural poor. Predicted climate variability and change will exert additional pressures on the already weakened subsistence economy. Thechosen pilot area, the community of KaluWoreda, in the South Wollo Zone of Ethiopia, has been suffering from recurrent droughts that have pushed their livelihoods to severe poverty and destitution.

Thematic areas: 
Climate-related hazards addressed: 
Level of intervention: 
Primary beneficiaries: 
Rural community in KaluWoreda, the South Wollo Zone in the north eastern part of the country.
Implementing agencies and partnering organizations: 
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Global Environment Facility (GEF)
Project status: 
Financing amount: 
GEF Project Grant (SCCF): $1,000,000 (as of July 2012), Total Project Cost: $2,870,000 (as of July 2012)
Co-financing total: 
$1,870,000 (as of July 2012)

Key results and outputs

Objective: To develop and pilot a range of effective coping mechanisms for reducing the vulnerability of farmers particularly women and children in KaluWoreda/district to drought.

Target: 20% reduction in vulnerability to climate change of men, women and children living in pilot sites.

Outcome 1: Livelihood strategies that enhance the resilience of vulnerable farmers to cope with drought and climate change adopted and sustained.

  • Target: 25 % of households (disaggregated by gender) adopt alternative livelihood strategies introduced by the project.
  • Target: 25% of the target villages adopt sustainable land management practices introduced by the project.

Outcome 2: Enhanced use of early warning information in agricultural systems at the selected pilot sites    

  • Target: 90% of pilot sites (DAs/Kebele administration) disseminate weather/drought information.
  • Target: 50% of households (disaggregated by gender) receive and use weather forecast information.

Outcome 3: Farmers/ agro-pastoralists outside the pilot sites were exposed to successful approaches and practice of the pilot kebeles.

  • Target: 20% of farmers/ agro pastoralists (disaggregated by gender) outside the target area  that adopt/replicate best practices


Climate Change - Environment and DRM Unit
Wubua Mekonnen
Country Officer / GEF Program Analyst
Legesse Gelaw
Project Manager
Jessica Troni
UNDP Regional Technical Advisor