Natural and human made hazards and associated disasters continue to pose a serious threat to Ethiopia. The objective of this paper is to assess awareness level of rural communities about hazards and their perceived vulnerability to cope with disasters. Cross-sectional survey was conducted in randomly selected districts of Jimma zone, Ethiopia. Quantitative and qualitative data was collected. Flood (66.2%), fire (61.2%), drought (51.2%) and disease outbreaks (45.3%) were the commonest hazards/disasters. Most (85.5%) of the respondents had awareness about at least one hazard/disaster. More than 36% of respondents perceived that they are vulnerable to one or more natural or man-made disasters. Respondents in age ≧50. yrs were less likely to have awareness about hazards compared to respondents in age category 18-24 (AOR=0.274, CI: 0.102-0.730). Moreover, those who participated in disaster related trainings were more likely to have awareness compared to those who did not (AOR=2.074, CI: 1.040-4.136). Similarly, respondents who could read and write have more perceived ability to cope with future disasters as compared to illiterates (AOR=2.53, CI: 1.76-3.65). Respondents had some awareness about hazards/disasters. Training and education have positive association with the level of awareness and perceived ability to cope with disasters. Therefore, community based training on disaster preparedness and response is recommended.
- Coping strategy
- Southwest Ethiopia