The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is undertaking a study on flooding in Kumasi and how to address it.
It’s aimed at building community resilience through social responsibility, with a focus on public understanding of the risks.
Head of Department of Centre Settlement Studies, Dr. Divine Ahadzie said “Recent floods have exposed the stark vulnerability of Ghanaian cities to flood hazards.
“With increasing urbanization, population growth and climate change, the threat is expected to be disastrous,” he added.
The project will begin at Sepe-Buokrom, one of the flood-prone suburbs of Kumasi.
Settlement experts appreciate structural measures are critical.
However, flooding events such as happened in 2007, 2010, 2015, and 2016 give drive for new adaptation and mitigation strategies.
There is need to engender community resilience in terms of preparedness, mitigation and adaptation (PMA) strategies.
So far, five focus group discussions involving male and female adults, opinion leaders, youth and children have taken place.
It will stimulate community engagement and involvement in efforts towards flood preparedness, mitigation and adaptation strategies.
A risk framework will form the basis for sharing resilience strategies of communities to floods, preparedness, mitigation and adaption.
Data is being analyzed but the community agrees the Assemblyman, Member of Parliament and chiefs (APC) must team up and lead the initiative.
The “APC” dimension is what Dr Ahadzie refers to as the potential “Iron Triangle” which will promote community resilience initiatives for disaster management in Ghanaian settlements.
Findings will be presented to community stakeholders before a town hall meeting to validate the report.
University of Cape Town through Ford Foundation in South Africa is supporting the study under the African Urban Research Initiative.