Disaster-Assistance Vocabulary Exercises

Use these disaster-assistance vocabulary exercises to practice important academic vocabulary emphasized in issue 14 of English Detective. (Toward a World without Hunger) and in this TED talk on ending hunger-- worth listening to or reading on its own, as well as to notice how the vocabulary is used. These fill-in exercises also review important words from previous issues.

Type the words above the exercises (or in the illustration below them) to fill in the blanks of this discussion. The first section has been done as an example (with separate vocabulary.). You can get a hint for the first letter of a word if you need help. Be sure to check your spelling, as misspelled words are marked wrong.

If you prefer to download and work from a pdf, right click this pdf version.

Disaster Assistance Overview

crisis, cycles, facilitate, inadequacies,
objective, occur, recovery, straightforward

We need a straightforward, realistic, approach to natural disasters. Cycles of drought and floods, earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornadoes are recurrent events in various parts of the world. We cannot prevent them, or predict the exact times they will occur, but we can prevent much suffering by preparing beforehand.

Planning, good communication systems, and well-maintained roads and other infrastructure can facilitate the delivery of relief supplies and save lives during the crisis. Once the worst effects of the disaster are past, recovery and restoration can begin.

 It’s also important to take time for an objective evaluation of the mistakes and successes of the relief effort. Recognizing the inadequacies of past relief efforts can save lives in the future-- because we know disaster will strike again. 

Use these words to type into the gaps in the next two exercises (they're also on the picture below the gap-fill to make it easier to complete the second section):

adequate, aware, compiled, comprehensive, diversification, ensure, excessive, fundamental, input, irreversible, items, minimize, minimum, offset, offset, regional, revenue, substitutes, supplement, symbolic, text, via

Disaster Planning

Preparation and good planning at both the and national levels are to disaster relief. For example, local storage facilities can collect food during good crop years to the worst shortages of drought years. Crop can also help adequate food supplies even in uncertain climatic conditions-- some crops will survive even if others fail completely.

The past several years there has been unprecedented flood damage in Asia and other parts of the world, with major floods in Southeast Asia and the Philippines, India, and Pakistan, among other areas.1 These nations, that a merely response is no longer , have begun flood water management and dam-building programs. Although these projects are expensive, the from electricity produced can help the costs. The suffering and damage they can prevent are worth the extra expense.

The government planning agencies have statistics and analyzed the data in order to decide how to make the best allocation of their countries’ limited resources to reduce flood damage to a in the future.

Disaster Relief

After a major earthquake, hurricane, or flood, national and international relief agencies first search for injured or stranded people and rescue as many as they can. New technologies have enabled better communication with the hardest hit areas. (After major flooding in the Philippines, the government informed people of roads that were still passable and areas to avoid Twitter. Cell phones and maybe even messages can help families and rescuers locate missing people and keep in touch.)

Relief agencies deliver food, water, water treatment supplies, and first aid to the affected region’s supplies. They try to maintain sanitation and improve the conditions in refugee camps that may be long-term (though inadequate) for home to many displaced people. Such humanitarian relief can prevent illnesses, deaths, and damage to children’s brains when local food and other resources are used up.

However, it is also important to take steps to prevent losses from such emergencies in the future. Disaster planning needs to include local participation and the of the people most likely to be affected. If everyone in an area will work together to prepare, they can take steps to some of the damage a drought, flood, or earthquake could cause. Human compassion will remain important, as we need to “expect the unexpected” when dealing with the forces of nature and the weather.

You can find more information about some of these words (as well as links to interesting talks that use them and a quiz to check your understanding of them) in English Detective 14, "A World Without Hunger?" in the back issues section. You might also want to try the Conservation Terminology Gapfiill.

Return from Disaster-Assistance Vocabulary Exercises to Vocabulary Games and Activities.

Return to Learn English Online (home).

Voice of America articles May 13, 2013Aug. 9, 2012, and Jan. 31,2012.

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