Disaster preparedness training: Equipping villagers for natural calamities

Empowering villagers to take charge of their own safety and well-being is a matter of necessity.
INITIATIVE. As the frequency and intensity of natural disasters continue to escalate, the need for proactive risk reduction measures becomes ever more pressing.
INITIATIVE. As the frequency and intensity of natural disasters continue to escalate, the need for proactive risk reduction measures becomes ever more pressing.Valerie Jamili

In the presence of persistent natural hazards and sudden emergencies, rural settlements frequently grapple with vulnerability and lack of readiness. But the magnitude of this threat diminishes when communities unite to implement preventative measures.

Below are several real-time measures currently being implemented and their operational effectiveness within village settings.

Scaling up

Just recently, the government response involves swiftly assessing and expanding the state of calamity declaration to include more villages affected by the El Niño phenomenon. Discussions are underway to consider additional villages based on reports of agricultural problems. 

The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office has identified 506 farmers cultivating 155 hectares of agricultural land in the upland villages requiring urgent assistance. The measure aims to provide timely and targeted assistance to rural communities affected by the El Niño phenomenon. 

By swiftly expanding the state of calamity declaration and allocating significant funds, the government seeks to address urgent agricultural problems and mitigate the impact of the dry spell on livelihoods. 

Technology and innovation

Technology is proving to be a powerful ally in the quest for risk reduction. The city government plans to implement an "11G" point-to-point microwave network to connect Cebu City Hall's communication system with its 80 barangays.

It can be recalled that this initiative was prompted by challenges in communicating with village officials after Typhoon Odette. After a result of delayed damage assessments, the "11G" network offers faster connectivity than 5G. It will serve as a backbone for radio communication, internet connectivity and the city's early warning system, especially in hinterland villages. 

Additionally, the CCDRRMC will launch a TV monitoring system in villages to improve information dissemination. By doing so, this measure has connected 30 sites initially that  expanded to all 80 barangays.

Local knowledge and collaboration

One of the most significant strengths of this approach is its emphasis on harnessing local knowledge and resources. Rather than imposing external solutions, initiatives are tailored to the specific needs and realities of each community. The key participants, including barangay local leaders, representatives from non-government organizations, government agencies, the private sector, academe, department heads, members of the CCDRRMC and CCDRRMO, and Cebu City government officials.

They conducted consultations among barangay stakeholders to identify their exposure to risks and vulnerabilities, determine priority intervention areas, assess existing Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) programs and activities. This is to evaluate entry points for strengthening community-based DRRM policies and programs in Cebu City.

As the frequency and intensity of natural disasters continue to escalate, the need for proactive risk reduction measures becomes ever more pressing. Empowering villagers to take charge of their own safety and well-being is a matter of necessity. By investing in education, technology and collaboration, communities can pave the way for a safer and more sustainable future for all.

Trending

No stories found.

Just in

No stories found.

Branded Content

No stories found.
SunStar Publishing Inc.
www.sunstar.com.ph