Awareness and preparedness strategies are an essential component of community based disaster risk management. Uttarakhand, a predominantly hill state comes under high seismic zones of   category V & VI. While its entire population of 101.17 Lakhs (2011 census) is vulnerable to disasters, the hill regions which comprise 86% of its geographical area are much higher on the vulnerability index. Around  69 % of its population resides in rural areas. The nine hill districts host only 17.6 % of its total urban population. As for road connectivity in hills, 2000 of its villages are located five or more kilometers from the road head. Being part of a young mountain system, Uttarakhand is inherently vulnerable to natural disasters such as cloudbursts, landslides, flash floods and earthquakes. The anthropogenic factors are also contributing in aggravating the situation.

Nanda Devi Institute of Adventure Sports and Outdoor Education in actively involved in the capacity building of the mountain communities in community based disaster risk management (CBDRM). The institute is duly certified by the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering and recognized by the Disaster Mitigation and Management Center of the State Government of Uttarakhand as an S&R  training  institute.

The CBDRM course is  organized in collaboration with development agencies. The course involves intense physical activity and introduces the participants to rock and rope craft along with mountain search & rescue. The indoor sessions orient the participants in disaster vulnerability assessment, mitigation and management. The objective is to evolve village based disaster response units (DRU) capable of performing during disaster and post disaster cycles. The course is conducted under the approved standard operating procedure by the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering.


Duration: 12 days
Course Strength: 16-40 participants
Course Instructors: Psychologists, Physicians, SDRF representatives and senior NDI instructors

Course Curriculum

  1. Disaster: Natural & manmade with reference to Himalayas, early warning and response. Earthquake. Flashfloods/cloud bursts. Landslides. Weather. Disaster related terminologies.
  2. Mountaineering: Rock Terminology, Principles of Rock Climbing, Holds, Bouldering, Chimney Climbing, Anchoring and Belaying, Rappelling, Long pitch Climbing, Fix Rope, Tyrolean crossing, Landslide area crossing.
  3. Community level: Understanding vulnerabilities, Community based disaster vulnerability survey, Behavior of communities during disaster situations (scenario building), Leadership-from chaos management to rapport building and local human resource management. Participatory learning. Secondary disasters, Norms for disposal of dead animals and cremations. Phases of disaster recovery from search and rescue to emergency relief, early and mid to long term recovery.
  4. Back Country Emergency Medical Response: Scenario based training on handling medical emergencies and evacuation during disaster situations. Psychosomatic impacts. Understanding special needs of the vulnerable sections of the society.
  5. Mountain Search & Rescue: Establishing Command and Control, Team objectives and response pattern, SOS, Quick damage assessment and prompt reporting,  Night navigation and rescue, Survival exercise, Outdoor cooking, Helipad making, landing and takeoff exercise, establishment of community based disaster response units (DRU).