Coastal area of Bangladesh is in most vulnerable due to its geographical location, flat landscape and particularly for climatic change. Coastal Bangladesh is the hub of different types of disasters such as cyclones, tidal surges, river erosion, floods, saline water intrusion, land subsidence and water logging(Sarwar, 2005). These natural hazards effect on socioeconomic, physical and environmental vulnerabilities (Islam and Walkerden, 2014). Local community and government try to increase capacities to address the vulnerability (Barr and Genicot, 2007; Barr and Genicot, 2008; Botzen and van den Bergh, 2009). A large number of households in the coastal area are highly vulnerable to frequent natural disasters. The coastal people experienced super cyclones sidr in 2007, aila in 2009, and mahasen in 2013, and lost a number of lives and destroyed dwelling houses, huge quantity of valuables crops, cattle and other household owned resources. Every year, therefore, huge damage incurs on the resources and the coastal community suffers tremendously by these natural calamities (Abedin and Shaw, 2015). Cyclone aila is the witness of rapid climatic change around the world and it also the evidence of tremendous natural revenge. It mostly hits southwestern region of Bangladesh on May 25, 2009. The cyclone took devastating shape on 23 May and scattered on 25 May 2009 in the coastal region of Bangladesh (Onneshan, 2010).
Natural catastrophe is harmful for human beings (Di Falco and Bulte, 2013). It does not matter whatever disaster occur. The main concern is any form of disaster causes huge social, economic and physical damages. Thus, it creates inhuman sufferings as well as limit access to formal and informal credit, slacken social bonding and bridging. Almost all households in affected areas are equally experienced the common shock for short and long run but degree may vary due to adaptive capacity (Banerjee and Munshi, 2004; Barr and Genicot, 2008; Fafchamps, 1999). Financial source become limited for mostly vulnerable people. So risk coping strategy work less in that case (Barr and Genicot, 2007; Barr and Genicot, 2008). Household try to take different risk coping strategies including credit from relatives and friends (Deaton, 1992; Morduch, 1990).
Actually, risk coping capacity is highly dependent on family structure and degree of bonding and bridging network (Ahamed, 2013; Aldrich and Meyer, 2015). The households with strong bonding and bridging network can quickly recover worse condition. On the other hand, less bonding and bridging network helps a little bit to come back previous condition. A few literature proved the informal insurance and non-financial aid have a significant role in household recovery, but effective in community level (Deaton, 1992; Udry, 1994). However, most of the literatures have shown consumption aspect of household with limited focus on investment(Islam and Nguyen, 2014). The main aim of this paper is to explore how social capital contribute to recovery from disaster. The author emphasizes the role of social capital after disaster recovery.
Social network (bonding and bridging ) is a sticky key factor that can be helpful during disaster time and post disaster recovery (Islam and Walkerden, 2014). Human being have a capacity to make a good term with their relatives, friends as well as neighbors for living together in a society boundary and linked with various social, political and economics organization. Social bonding and bridging are the inner matter that grow up long resending together and sharing ideas, belief, and culture (Baird (2010); Fafchamps and Gubert (2007); Grimard (1997))and resource sharing in problematic time so on. Social bonding and bridging have a different scenario in pre and post disaster (Clay et al., 2016; Islam and Walkerden, 2014). Some researcher argue, bonding gradually falls in pre or post disaster but the bridging has no exist at that two different time. After disaster people loss a large number of property and assets, that creates a sudden economic crisis. Poor households are affected greater than rich (Ahamed, 2013; Boxman et al., 1991; Hossain and Hossain, 2015). To get back previous condition and recover economic losses as well as overall conditions people badly in need resource through formal and informal network. Formal and informal loan seem to be limited then. Availability of formal credit is rare when household do not have strong financial background. Beside, formal credit provider claim high amount of interest against loan. It helps only middle and higher class of households (Alger and Weibul, 2010; Angelucci et al., 2012; Banerjee and Munshi, 2004; Barr and Genicot, 2008; De Weerdt and Dercon, 2006; Deaton, 1992). Nevertheless, on average informal labor or assistance play a vital role in recovery process. Cooperation make the bridging network strong and people have a common tendency to help its neighbors and relatives in time of danger. Social bonding and bridging networks are vital in post disaster rehabilitation and reconstruction (Islam and Walkerden, 2014). These networks are significant and show how it responds to cope with natural disaster. When any form of disaster hits the prime, responders are the local residents because different organizations takes 48-72 hours to reach the affected zone. Different NGOs and voluntary organization take various economic and social project to recovery phases (Abedin and Shaw, 2015; Angelucci et al., 2012; Foster and Rosenzweig, 2001). Some organization provide direct economic support to the affected households, other help in contact of work in bank, road and other reconstruction. Sometimes, it takes longer to arrive due to communication and difficulties in access. Aldrich and Meyer (2015) argued institutional goods and assistance takes four or five days to reach the affected areas. Household’s social networks contribute on this period for initial support. But in long run institutional assistance are a very rarely exist. NGOs generally work for immediate support to the victims, in long run it work less to minimize losses. Alger and Weibul (2010) Any community level disaster, bring inhuman suffering to the affected households. Majority literature have showed immediate recovery ways and financial side of the victim households. Some of these papers highly discussed previous and post condition. But this paper is completely unique, it generally look for how non-financial aid can recover the worsen condition. For this purpose the researcher choose mostly and frequently disaster affected zone of Khulna District named Koyra Upazilla. This study uses the experiences with cyclone aila in five most affected villages to reveal how social network contribute to recovery from cyclone.
1.2 Scope of the study
The frequency and severity of ?ood is increasing almost every country around the world because of rapid increase of global warming (Abedin and Shaw, 2015). The southwestern parts of Bangladesh are mostly vulnerable and people living these areas have low adaptive capacity due to geographical and socio-demographic reasons. The study is enclosed the role of social capital of aila affected households at five villages at Uttar Bedkashi in Koyra Upazila. In the context of disaster, early recovering strategies are applicable in the post disaster through social capital (Botzen and van den Bergh, 2009). But, it is a temporary solution for reducing immediate adversity. Disaster aila was a long run effect on affected areas that was needed long run plan to minimize the affliction. However, this study has focused on post disaster recovering with social capital on flood-displaced households. Although there are several parts of the southwestern areas are tremendously affected by flooding aila, the study is limited to few selected villages in Uttar Bedkashi. The households in koyra upazila were displaced by aila and people are forced to shift safer areas from their residence and washed away the most of the properties they owned. It was highly affected on households and crops. This paper focusses on the role of social networking to recover their losses after disaster cyclone aila in Koyra Upazila. As measurement, the role of social networking is highly troublesome so author use both qualitative and quantitative technique to quantify the research. Author will collect information from purposively selected respondent from the five aila affected villages. A total of 90 households have covered in this study in order to fulfill the study objectives. Social capital is a dominating network that helps mostly economically insolvent households.
This study five cover most severely affected regions of Koyra upazila. Katmarcor, Katkata, Gazi Para, Gabbunia and Horihorpur are the most affected regions and households suffer more than three years after cyclone aila over. Therefore, the duration and long-term salinity is another issue for selecting these areas. It hampers their normal livelihood as well as limit employment opportunity of the households.
1.3 Rationale of the Study
As disasters are the common phenomena in coastal regions of Bangladesh. Every year it visits once or twice and destroyed a lot of property and assets. Sometimes the intensity of disaster become so acute that households require many years to come back the previous condition. Natural disaster occurs naturally and no one can protect it but due to proper preparedness and cautions may reduce the degree of damage. Social bonding and bridging are the key determinant that are essential in post disaster period. Households get support both financial and non-financial support from their relatives, neighbors, friends. Several studies have considered the importance of social capital in time of disaster. However, a few studies that have given comprehensive overview of the contribution of social capital (bonding and bridging). A region with strong bonding and bridging network can be expected to work together to gain access to external resources. Due to social bonding community members highlighted more on the needs of their particular households e.g., repairing their households and reestablishing livelihoods. Bonding and bridging is useful for reducing post disaster psychological stress, depression and other psychological symptoms. Empirical evidences shows lack of social bonding and bridging it is acute of depression and psychological stress.
Besides, these psychological facts, affected households face instant financial crisis and non-financial assistance to repairing their households. Social bonding or bridging capacity reduces the limitless burden a little bit from taking loan from NGOs, bank, moneylenders with high interest rate (Di Falco and Bulte, 2013; Drabek et al., 1975). Therefore, observing everything, social network is the effective solution in case of financial, social, psychological and non-financial crisis. It provides different coping mechanism to quick recover from worsen condition. Therefore, the rational of this study is to investigate the actual role of social capital for mostly vulnerable households that have a very minimum capacity to recover after disaster. The study is more vital for analyzing the question ‘does social networking be a substitute way for financial, social, non-financial and psychological for destitute households?’.
1.4 Objective of the Study
The main objective of the study is to explore the role of social capital and their ways to recover through networks. Social capital is closely related to society, so may contribute a lot in time of disaster and in time of difficulties. Therefore, the present study reveal the following objective-
Ø to explore the role of social capital to disaster recovery in the affected regions
1.5 Research Questions of the Study
It is another goal is to give direction to fulfill the research objective. Author tries to figure out the following research questions that support the research objective.
(i). Does social network matter after disaster?
(ii) How was the degree of social network?
1.6 Significance of the Study
Research is a tool to accumulate knowledge on a specific field of knowledge, point out problems and solving it through systematically. Scholar has conducted a few research on the coastal community, their sufferings, destitute conditions and also research how to mitigate the strength of disaster both in short and long run. Very little scholar has concentrated on the long run effect of disaster aila and its ways to mitigate sufferings. Present study is completely different that provides the contribution of social capital to disaster recovery. Generally, affected areas are financially limited after disaster, but nonfinancial aid is always present from their friends, neighbors, relatives and other organizations. This study is quite different it open a new window to the research field. It try to show how people with their network can mitigate the unfavorable condition and get back to a stable position.
1.7 Limitation of the Study
The researcher has faced difficulties in convincing target groups about the purpose of the study. Since they are in dire living condition, whenever they see people approaching to talk to them, they expect, they are from NGOs coming to help them. Then they were describing the worse in a badly ways although they face little amount of worsen. Some of the target groups were not willing to fill questionnaire as they came to know that I was a student and the research was only for the purpose of education. Above all, when I talked to them about the flood it reminded them the unforgettable event that happened during the incidence of flood. Especially those who had lost their families became nervous. Such scenario was a bottleneck in the process of obtaining data from the people under study.
1.8 Organization of the Thesis
The thesis is divided into five chapters. The first chapter presents background of the study, scope of the study, rationale of the study, objective of the study, research questions of the study, significance of the study, limitation of the study and organization of the paper. The second chapter deals with the theoretical framework and review of relevant materials related with this study, literature regarding social capital, degree of bonding and bridging network, disaster resilience and recovery, informal risk scenario of cyclone aila. Third chapter presents methodological aspect, general description of the study area, research type, sample designing, analytical framework, description of the variables and data analysis. Fourth chapter shows results of the descriptive analysis of the study, which consisted of socio-economic characteristics of the respondents, degree of network bonding both bonding and bridging of victims, asset possessions, the coping strategies employed and their outcome, and the factors that determine the choice of coping mechanisms. Chapter five gives conclusions and recommendations based on the findings of the study.