Department of the Interior and Local Government Caraga Region (DILG 13) Regional Director Lilibeth A. Famacion presented Caraga Region’s State of Disaster Preparedness and highlighted the Seal of Good Local Governance as having Disaster Preparedness as a core element during the DRR-CCA Roadshow entitled Iba ang Panahon: Science for Safer Communities last April 29-30, 2014 at the Gateway Hotel, Surigao City.

The forum which was rife with technical inputs on scientific tools for weather forecasting and monitoring for disaster preparedness, prevention and mitigation also became a venue Local Chief Executives and Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officers (DRRMOs) to apprise themselves with the National State of Disaster Risk Reduction and Management and the state of disaster preparedness in the region. The former was presented by no less than the lady director of the Office of Civil Defense, Liza R. Mazo, and the latter by DILG Regional Director Lilibeth A. Famacion.

During her presentation, RD Famacion revealed the results of the assessment conducted by the DILG13 across the 77 Local Government Units in the region (i.e. 67 municipalities, 6 cities and 4 provinces excluding Dinagat Islands) for the Seal of Disaster Preparedness (SDP) last 2012.  The SDP is a proof of local government resilience to risks and vulnerabilities. Based on DILG Memorandum Circular No. 2012-79 dated April 25, 2012, it intends to assess performance gaps of LGUs and link them to policy or program intervention and monitor improvement on disaster preparedness.

Results as presented showed how our LGUs fare relatively low-medium in most of the indicators with some indicators with high ratings.
The areas wherein majority of the region’s LGUs rated high are in Leadership Structure in terms of organized DRRMOs; and External Support in terms of Partnership and Volunteerism.

Areas wherein majority of the region’s LGUs rated medium are in Leadership Structure in terms of organized DRRMCs, Disaster Operations or Emergency Center; and Operational Readiness in terms of Simulation Exercises, and Evacuation Alert System.

And the areas wherein majority of the region’s LGUs rated low are in Leadership structure in terms of Incident Command System; Risk Assessment Planning and Budgeting; Operational Readiness in terms of Early Warning System, Local Policy on Forced or Pre-Emptive Evacuation Enacted, and Stockpiling and Equipping; External Support in terms of Community Awareness; and the likelihood of preparedness. The Likelihood of preparedness is the capability of the LGU to address the potential effects of a disaster to human life. It implies a window of 6 to 12 hours before a disaster takes place.

RD Famacion also highlighted the Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) as the flagship program of the department, raising the bar of local governance from that of the Seal of Good Housekeeping (SGH).  The SGLG’s six outcome areas include Disaster Preparedness and is actually one of the three (3) core assessment areas that the LGU must pass in the 3+1 scheme. It looks at Hazard Assessment that is linked to plans; systems, structures, process and budget; and availability of documents such as Executive Orders creative LDRRMC, designating LDRRMO, Comprehensive Land Use Plan, DRRM Plan, Contingency Plan, Local Climate Change Action Plan and Standard Operating Procedures.

The Disaster Risk Reduction and Management – Climate Change Adaptation (DRRM-CCA) initiatives and accomplishments of the DILG 13 were also presented by RD Famacion as well as showcased in the form of an exhibit at the hotel lobby throughout the duration of the roadshow. (Don Manuelo O. Patrimonio, RIO-Designate, DILG XIII)

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