The U.S Department of State and the United States Agency for International Development, with support from the UN World Food Programmed, Globe Labs, Open Data Philippines and other partners, will be holding the 1st Philippines Disaster Risk Reduction and Response Tech Camp this Monday, May 5, 2014,focusing on imperatives and initiatives in integrating S&T solutions to the address the increasing complexities of disasters and extreme events.
The U.S. Embassy, US Agency for international Development (USAID), and globe telecom join hands to address the growing frequency and magnitude of extreme environmental events worldwide following recent destructive natural calamities such as Typhoon Haiyan and the 7.2 magnitude earthquake in the Philippines, typhoon Phailin in India, Hurricanes Manuel and Ingrid and Mexico, among others.
The group is espousing a problem-solving approach on disaster risk reduction using integrated robust science and technology solutions to prevent and prepare for worst-case scenarios.
Globe has a strong business continuity program in place to limit the impact of any disruption in its operations, prioritize the safety of its people and ensure delivery of products and services even during disaster. At the same time, the company actively helps affected communities not only through free calls, text, and internet services and relief operations, but more importantly, by providing livelihood opportunities as well as housing and educational assistance to bring they back on their feet.
“Being an active participant in disaster risk management in the country, Globe is thankful to be part of this Tech Camp. We are confident that by sharing our core strength in Information and Communications Technology, we can help make the event more meaningful and responsive to the needs of the people,” said Yoly Crisanto, SVP, and Globe Corporate Communications.
The 2012 World Risk Index identified the Philippines as the 3rd most vulnerable nation to experience climate change and disasters in the world with its capital, Manila as 2nd most vulnerable city.
Dan Miller, Chief of the Office of Economic Development and Governance at USAID/Philippines said: “We are excited to be bringing TechCamp to the Philippines. This program has been implemented in countries all over the world, and we believe it will open up new possibilities for tech solutions to building climate resilient communities in the Philippines, informed by real-time dialogue between technologists and members of disaster-prone communities from around the country.”
Given the scenario, the Tech Camp is expected to help improve the capacity of disaster managers at the local government units (LGUs) in planning and preparing for and managing incidents that affect the socio-economic lives of their constituents. It will provide tools and technologies that can assist LGUs in establishing early warning systems, contingency plans, evacuation routes, among other disaster mitigating interventions that can prevent and reduce risks and citizen’s exposures to natural hazards.
At the same time, the Tech Camp will bring technologists that can showcase current and emerging IT applications to allow LGUs to learn and choose the appropriate platforms, participate in interactive training sessions and brainstorming sessions that will enable them to see possible technological solutions to Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Building issues.