Civil defense office awards 3 Gawad Kalasag winners-A A +A
By JM Agreda
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
ORGANIZATIONS and individuals who have exemplified preparedness and upheld standards of disaster management in the country were recently lauded by the Office of Civil Defense (OCD).
OCD-Cordillera OIC Andre Alex Uy and Police Regional Office–Cordillera director Chief Superintendent Benjamin Magalong awarded the annual Gawad Kalasag (Kalamidad at Sakuna LAbanan SAriling Galing ang Kaligtasan) Thursday at Hotel Elizabeth in the first Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Officer’s Convention.
The awardees are Philex Mining Corporation (Private and Non-Government Organization Category), Hilario Villabueva (Individual Heroic Category) and Baguio City Emergency Medical Services (Government Emergency Manager’s Award).
Uy challenged local disaster officials to always maintain standards and quickly implement disaster risk reduction plans improved and developed in their recent convention.
The OCD also gave certificates of appreciation to their government partners namely the Department of Public Works and Highways, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Social Welfare and Development, Pagasa, Department of Health, PRO-Cordillera, Philippine Information Agency and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau.
Private partners were also recognized which include Community and Family Services International, Cordillera Parents federation Inc., Benguet Electric Cooperative and Lepanto Mining Corporation.
Magalong, meanwhile, stressed the importance of local preparedness and advocated to local governments the use of ‘blue boxes’ containing basic emergency equipment and supplies needed by responders during disasters.
DILG regional director John Castañeda said of some 27 Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, 10 emerged as finalists in this year’s search for Seal of Disaster Preparedness, a pet project initiated by the late DILG Secretary Jesse Robredo.
The Seal of Disaster Preparedness focuses on both institutional and operational capacity-building for local governments against calamities.
The agency is coming up with financial incentives in hopes local governments participate in efforts to curb death, injuries and losses incurred by local governments during disasters.
The Seal of Disaster Preparedness may be used as a checklist as it serves as guide for local officials on what to do in times of disasters.
This year’s finalists are the Provincial Governments of Apayao, Kalinga and Mt. Province, municipalities of Lagangilang, Bangued, and Sallapadan in Abra, municipalities of Pudtol and Flora in Apayao, municipality of La Trinidad, Benguet, municipality of Bontoc and Tabuk City.
The regional director said these finalists will undergo a more stringent selection process which includes evaluation of responder competencies and disaster risk reduction and mitigating measures initiated in the past year.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on September 04, 2012.