Issue of April 8, 2018
     
NEWS
Benguet
Kalinga
 
OPINION
 

2017
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First resilience caravan in CAR kicks off in Mountain Province
by Lyndon Ali and Zaldy de Guzman

With the aim to educate Cordilleran communities on using protective mechanisms and actions available to save lives and protect people’s livelihood during emergencies and disasters, the Office of Civil Defense Cordillera conducted the first community-based resilience caravan in the region.

The caravan, conducted with the help of the Mountain Province Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, was held on March 27 in Bontoc, Mountain Province participated in by more than 100 residents of 16 barangays, among them community and student leaders.

OCD-CAR Operations Chief Ferdinand Tamulto delivered lectures on Philippine DRRM system and some basic concepts on hydro-meteorological hazards.

Kapitan Alerto, the province’s version of the action icon of disaster preparedness, taught the participants on the emergency survival kit or Go Bag and its significance, and some fundamentals on first aid.

A fire officer from Bontoc Municipal Fire Station also shared his knowledge on fire suppression. First-aid kits were also given to the attendees.

Acting Gov. Bonifacio C. Lacwasan Jr., who graced the caravan, emphasized on the importance of such endeavor for the people to prepare for, respond to, and recover from the effects of disasters.

“This is indeed very important as far as enhancing public awareness on disaster risk reduction and management is concerned. I believe that one of the reasons why the impact of disasters to people is so devastating is the lack of knowledge and preparedness among the affected residents. I am very happy that this activity pushed through and that our people gained skills and information,” Lacwasan said.

A week after the pilot activity, the OCD-CAR spearheaded a DRRM training course this time involving farmers and rural workers from different municipalities of Benguet on April 4.

Leonardo Liwan Antonio, president of the irrigators association in Bakun, expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to learn.

“To help my community through this training, I will inform fellow farmers on what to do when a disaster takes place. This course is very noteworthy because in real life, we are on our own when calamity strikes,” he added.

Experts explained DRRM concepts and mechanisms, such as hydromet hazards by the Pagasa Baguio synoptic station and geological hazards by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau.
Local DRRM officers from Benguet also imparted their knowledge on DRRM system and some of their experiences as local counterparts on disaster management.

“Our goal at the national level is not just to minimize the casualties during and after disasters, but also to make it zero if it is possible. One of the reasons why we want this information to be disseminated in the smallest communities in our society is for the people to be alert in preparing when a disaster occurs,” La Trinidad Municipal DRRM officer Yoshio Labi said.


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