Let’s not go back to normal

By Abbie Wells On 11.05.2020 Climate changeCoronavirus

Practical Action welcomes the call to arms published in Le Monde recently. The article calls on world leaders not to return to ‘normal’ after the pandemic, which is vital, but needs to go further to ensure we build a post-virus world that works better for everyone.

Paul Smith Lomas, CEO, Practical Action said: “We welcome the call to arms – “No Return to a New Normal” –  published in Le Monde on Tuesday. There is a clear need to rethink the way the world works and it’s fantastic to see a movement building towards this in the wake of coronavirus.

“We’ve never accepted normal as good enough for the world’s most vulnerable and we wholeheartedly advocate for something better. We’ve been championing practical approaches and ingenious solutions to poverty for the past 50 years. The effects of the pandemic will hit the most vulnerable people living in the poorest countries hardest and now is the time for a radical overhaul so the world works better for people and the planet.

“In the face of global collective will for a better world it’s vital that we understand what it takes – collaboration and community-powered solutions, something we know that works. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to build a more resilient world that works better for everyone.”

Handwashing at Pandpieri Primary School

In just a few short weeks, global normality has been hijacked by a microscopic virus. The global systems and markets which support the current global order have been brought to their knees. In the global north, we have seen oil prices plummet, shares drop and businesses close.

But in the global south people who were just surviving will be pushed even further into poverty.

The world’s vulnerable need the ability to farm successfully for food and to earn a decent living. The opportunity to live in clean, safe environments with access to basic services (safe water, waste services, clean cooking fuels and electricity). The ability to withstand and recover from disasters.

If we get these things right in small ways around the world, big change is possible.

Find out more about Practical Action’s experience, real world examples and ingenuity here.