To reduce people’s vulnerability to climate change, CARE focuses on building the adaptive capacity of individuals and communities: the capacity to adjust behaviors, practices, lifestyles and livelihood strategies in response to climate changes and its impacts. CARE’s approach to adaptation focuses on targeted community-based adaptation projects and integrating climate change adaptation into our work in climate-sensitive sectors. Adaptation is critical to protecting millions of poor and marginalized people who are at risk of losing their lives and livelihoods as a result of climate change.

We call Community-Based Adaptation (CBA) projects our interventions with the primary objective to improve the capacity of local communities to adapt to climate change. CARE places particular emphasis on building the adaptive capacity of women and girls. Effective CBA requires an integrated approach that combines traditional knowledge with innovative strategies that not only address current vulnerabilities, but also build people’s resilience to face uncertainties and challenges.

CARE continues to significantly ramp up its action on climate change adaptation, particularly following the IPCC Special Report on 1.5°C. The report highlights the multiple sustainable development benefits of adaptation action, including in synergy with poverty reduction efforts and other key elements of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In our climate action, we always take the rationale that when the poorest and most vulnerable – often women and girls and their communities in developing countries – are put at the center of solutions and are viewed as agents of change rather than as victims of climate impacts, adaptation can significantly reduce the risks from climate disruption. Only by addressing underlying drivers, such as unequal power relations and access to decision-making, can vulnerable people identify and implement the adaptation solutions that serve their needs best.