November 30, 2010
Lian MDRRMC Brainstorming/planning for the year 2011
Objectives of the brainstorming, meeting, planning re: Lian MDRRMC Program for the year 2011:
Flow of discussion:
Introduction and rapport building was facilitated by the DRR technical facilitator. (Please see above names of attendees).
QUESTIONS/RESOLUTIONS RE: RA 10121
The Disaster Risk Reduction project for the communities of Lian, Batangas and Bagac, Bataan is now on full swing. The project has recently hired a Project Technical Facilitator who will be in-charge of project implementation within the mentioned sites. Essentially, the project aims to conduct the following components: undertake a participatory action research for DRR; institutionalization of DRR within the local government units; and capacity building on DRR for partner sites. Participatory research for DRR entails the conduct of the following activities: profiling of the community where the intervention is to take place; conduct of studies on hazards and other sources of vulnerabilities; and inventory of previous or existing disaster related projects and legal instruments. Institutionalization of DRR within the LGU entails the following: formation of both a municipal wide DRR structure as well as several barangay based DRR groups; conduct of a local based DRR action planning session; and more importantly, the passage of a municipal ordinance establishing the DRR mechanism for the partner sites. Capacity building on DRR for community partners entail the conduct of the following: drafting and finalization of 6 DRR training modules; creation of a pool of DRR trainers from the LGU; conduct of the actual training using the finalized DRR modules; and a cross-visit to a DRR managed community in San Mateo, Rizal or Albay province in Bicol. Essence of the entire DRR intervention is building the capacity of the local government units to prepare and appropriately respond to disaster episodes. Thus focus is given to the 6 DRR modules. DRR module 1 is on the salient features of Republic Act 10121 or the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010; DRR module 2 is on the basic concepts of disaster; DRR module 3 is on scope, phase and activities in disaster management; DRR module 4 is on skills in disaster management; DRR module 5 is on community disaster drill; and lastly DRR module 6 is on search, rescue and recovery management. The DRR intervention will run initially for 1 year.
Essence of disaster preparedness and risk management
The Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA) and its internal and external partners have recently sat down to discuss future disaster response actions. During the 22 June 2010 meeting, representatives from the center, selected faculty members from the university, disaster management practitioners from the Center for Disaster Preparedness and Management (CDP) and Citizens’ Disaster Response Center (CDRC) and the founder of Buklod Tao, a peoples’ organization established in San Mateo, Rizal got together to plan out disaster management activities for external partners. To aid the group, the following inputs were provided during the session: presentation of the Lasalyano Kaakibat tuwing Sakuna (LAKAS): the DLSU disaster response mechanism; presentation of the results of two post-Ondoy consultation-workshops held last year; and highlights of the new law mandating disaster risk reduction and management in the Philippines.
The major output of the session was the formulation of the DLSU Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) Action Framework, incorporating the concepts of DRRM and academe-local government unit-NGO partnership. The framework stressed collaborative efforts among the major stakeholders in disaster risk reduction as well as placing emphasis on the community based approach. This framework will also serve to guide the university and its major partners in providing disaster related support to external communities as well as the basis for capacity building for both the university and the partner sites.
The center will pilot the said DRRM initiative in two pre-selected communities of Lian, Batangas and Bagac, Bataan, were community organizing efforts are currently being undertaken.
All of these initiatives will run parallel to the existing university commitment to build gabion boxes along the Nangka River in San Mateo, Rizal in an effort to strengthen the riverbanks against erosion and the fine-tuning of the Disaster Response Mechanism of DLSU.
With the impending approval of the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010, the De La Salle University Manila through the Center for Social Concern and Action (COSCA) in partnership with internal and external stakeholders in disaster work will hold a third session to conceptualize and initially draft the university’s DRR plans for external partners for school year 2010 to 2011. This is the 3rd of the series of disaster related forums started last 2009 immediately preceding the typhoon Ondoy incident. The first two workshops highlighted the lack of disaster preparations in local communities as well as limited response and rehabilitation activities provided by service institutions.
This third workshop is crucial not only due to the soon to be passed DRR framework to be adopted by the country but moreso on the factoring in of the Climate Change Adaptation strategies as a major consideration in DRR planning. This forum tentatively scheduled for 22 June 2010 is to be attended in by the following COSCA partners in disaster preparedness work: a representative from the Behavioral Science Department of DLSU; representatives from Citizen Disaster Response Network; and selected representatives from the local communities.
Expected to be discussed during the forum are the following: conceptualization of an academic based CCA-DRR framework; course content for a CCA-DRR planning process for 2 pilot sites in Bagac, Bataan and Lian, Batangas; and the conduct of vulnerability studies for the mentioned pilot sites focusing on the identification of potential hazards. Ultimately, the goal of the entire exercise is the provision of relevant packages of services to the pilot sites to ensure the communities’ resiliency during disaster episodes and the replication of these initiatives to other COSCA partner sites.
Parallel to this activity is the continued procurement and storing of necessary relief items as part of the immediate response mechanism of COSCA and the on-going construction of gabion boxes in San Mateo, Rizal. This is a structural enhancement system to ensure stability of the riverbanks during floodings and other extreme conditions.
Bill Brower is a Field Program Officer with GlobalGiving who is visiting our partners’ projects throughout South and Southeast Asia. On March 5th he met with Joseph Rosal of the De la Salle University Center for Social Concern and Action and Noli Abinales of their implementing partner, Buklod Tao, in the COSCA office in Manila. His “Postcard” from the visit:
COSCA has already reported on their initial response to last year’s Typhoon Ondoy; in speaking with them and seeing pictures, it does appear that money from GlobalGiving’s generous donors was able to help many people in the chaotic days and weeks following the storm with emergency supplies and medical teams. There is still some money left and I was happy to hear that it will be going to disaster risk reduction—replicating in other communities the success Buklod Tao has had in San Mateo. Too often disaster response is limited to what can be done ex post facto, missing the most effective way to save lives: being prepared before the worst hits.
Noli Abinales and others started Buklod Tao in 1997 as a community-based disaster management team. They trained rescue teams, fabricated rescue boats and developed an early warning system. Since then there have been no casualties in their community, unlike in neighboring communities. Their primary initiative these days is “on-site relocation”—building higher, safer homes in the communities where vulnerable families live. They have also been putting up embankment walls, some with the help of DLSU students, to help prevent flooding. I’m happy that GlobalGiving money will allow COSCA and Buklod Tao to expand these life-saving initiatives to other communities, long after much of the world’s attention has moved on to Haiti, Chile, China…
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Director, Center for Social Concern and Action
National Capital Region