CDEMA partners with UNISDR to promote global disaster reduction campaign – My City is getting ready -

Bridgetown, Barbados May 31, 2010 (CDEMA) - CDEMA will join sub-regional disaster agencies, international, regional, national and local organisations in partnering with the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) to raise awareness and promote the 2010 -2011 World Disaster Reduction Campaign in the Caribbean region.

 

The two-year campaign, Making Cities Resilient: My City is Getting Ready, is being coordinated by the UN ISDR Secretariat and calls on local governments and communities to strengthen readiness capacities of cities to reduce the risk from natural hazards impacts.  The Campaign targets urban and coastal cities and areas which on a global scale have a high poulation density and are most vulnerable to natural hazards and climate change.

 


Jeremy Collymore, Executive Director, CDEMA, is attending the regional launch ceremony in Lima Peru, today. This has been organised by the National Government of Peru through the National Civil Defense Institute and the Regional Office of the UNISDR for the Americas.
Commenting on CDEMA’s involvement, Collymore drew attention to the catastrophic earthqauke in  Haiti, a CDEMA Participating State, that cost the lives of over 200,000 and displaced over one million people in the capital city of Port au Prince.


He also noted the abandonment of Plymouth, the former capital of Montserrat as a result of the volcanic eruption. High and increasing urbanization in largely coastal capital cities is resulting in many more exposed and vulnerable livelihoods. The challenges in the maintenance of urban infrastructure (roads, bridges, utilities etc) predispose towards severe dislocation from the impacts of hurricanes, floods, earthquakes and the variability of climate change make this a matter for priority attention.


“We need to empower citizens to take ownership for disaster risk reduction in their communities,” said Colllymore.


“This camapign focuses on one of the key priorities of the Comprehensive Disaster Management Agenda of CDEMA’s 18 Participating States, which recognises and advocates community level  engagement as a critical factor in building disaster resilience.  Disaster mitigation starts with those who know the hazards that face their community and the more aware and involved the citizens, the better prepared they will be, “ he said.


According to a release from UNISDR, over the next two years of the “My City is Getting Ready Campaign” local government leaders around the world will be urged to invest more in disaster risk reduction, which includes: improving urban planning, infrastructure and building safety; reinforcing drainage systems to reduce flood, storm and health threats; installing early warning systems; conducting public preparedness drills; and taking measures to adapt to the increasing impacts of climate change.


The regional launch Ceremony in Peru will be preceded by roundtable discussions on key issues pertaining to sustainable urbanisatisation, working partnership, urban risk awareness and knowledge promotion. CDEMA Executive Director will also attend a Meeting of Sub-Regional Organisations for Disaster Risk Management that will consider how to better define the operating space of these agencies in the burgeoning and globalization of interest in the area of DRR.   .
UNISDR launched the Campaign in Bonn, Germany on May 30, 2010.

 

For more information about the campaign, visit www.unisdr.org/campaign and www.preventionweb.net

CDEMA Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency. Resilience Way, Lower Estate, St. Michael Tel: (246) 434-4880, Fax: (246) 271-3660
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