Lessons that Defined our Fourth Year & the View Ahead

Cover graphic_with text_Web

The past year was one of fragility. Conflict rages across the world, while climate change is burning the planet, exponentially increasing the risk of epidemic and pandemic disease outbreaks. These realities, compounded by the years-long COVID pandemic, have rendered our societies ever more fragile.

The counterweight to fragility is resilience. Ensuring the world can protect the most vulnerable even through future crises such as pandemics requires a focus on resilience at the political, societal, community, and even individual levels. 

As a Network, we are evolving to put resilience and a truly global view at the heart of our advocacy. The launch of our African network advocacy partner, Resilience Action Network Africa (RANA), illustrates our dedication to this evolution. Aggrey Aluso, RANA’s incoming Executive Director (who continues to serve as PAN’s Africa Director and Global Policy Lead) put it aptly, “We must bring the African voice to global processes to help reset the imbalanced power dynamics that undermine resilience.”

We are also putting into practice our commitment to work across silos. In the face of the twin threats of climate change and pandemics, collaboration across issues is a must. We are mobilising partners, connecting policy dots, and creating win-win-win advocacy solutions across the health, climate, and finance agendas — stitching them together with the thread of gender-sensitivity and inclusion of the most vulnerable. 

The past year and the year ahead present key opportunities to act on the brutal lessons of the COVID-19 pandemic. Just as peak COVID-19 was a crisis whose impact went beyond health, the solutions to build a world in which pandemics are prevented pre- and post-outbreak require cross-sector work, particularly in an evolving climate.

As we work increasingly on this interconnected agenda and seek partners from across disciplines, our teams will continue to demonstrate the power of network advocacy, where the importance of achieving the mission allows colleagues from different organisations and sectors to rise up and collaborate just as they would with colleagues from their own teams.

Alongside this work, we are working closely with key partners to achieve an equitable and legally-binding pandemic agreement to unlock more resources for low- and middle-income countries to invest in climate and pandemic priorities, including leveraging multilateral development bank reform. We will keep pushing vital policy innovations, such as pandemic clauses in lending and debt restructuring agreements.

We have always operated with an eye to radical collaboration — pandemics, climate change, health, gender, and economic inequality are too complex and too interconnected for any one stakeholder to tackle alone. Thank you to each of our partners and those who choose to join us in pursuit of a future that is more resilient to the crises of the present — and the crises around the corner. 

To those that have worked with us: thank you, and to future partners: join us!

This open letter is part of PAN’s Year Four Impact Report — Focused on a Resilient Future.