Disasters Emergency Committee
Information for teachers on what the Disasters Emergency Committee is and how it helps, with activities for learners.
- Teacher briefing, quick activity
- Citizenship, PSHE
- Disasters and emergencies
During major emergencies – like the current crisis of people fleeing violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, or the devastating earthquake that hit Nepal in April 2015 – the Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) becomes active.
Who forms this committee? What does it do, and why? This briefing for teachers explains, with suggested discussion points for learners.
- be introduced to the DEC, understand what it does, how it is funded, who its members are and when it operates.
- find out what the DEC is
- consider the role of fundraising and the media during major emergency appeals
- discuss why some humanitarian crises get DEC support and why others don’t
- give their opinions on charity appeals and advertising.
1. Teacher briefing
- What is the Disasters Emergency Committee?
- Does it operate during all disasters?
- What happens when an appeal is launched?
- How much do appeals raise and how is the money spent?
- Who are the members?
2. Classroom activity
- Discussion questions consider the role of the media, fundraising, which disasters get support, challenges faced, and advertising during appeals.
This briefing was written by P J White and produced in May 2007. It was updated in October 2017.
The photo shows essential household items being distributed by the ICRC in Yemen (© Nabil Sabra/ICRC).