Director Priscilla N. Razon welcomes delegates to the launch of the programme Synergizing Efforts for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Provinces of Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental Tuesday at The Pinnacle Hotel and Suites.  Also present at the launch was World Food Programme Representative and Country Director Praveen Agrawal who provided the programme brief.

With the funding from the United States Agency for International Development’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA), Catholic Relief Services (CRS), Plan International (Plan), and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) agreed to work closely together and build upon each organization’s DRR (disaster risk reduction) programmes to make a bigger impact on vulnerable communities.

The three agencies will share information and assessments and mapping of programme areas and interventions to ensure no overlap in their respective projects. The agencies will also conduct joint monitoring and evaluation activities and share technical expertise and resources as part of the cooperation.

Under this synergy of initiatives, CRS will implement its project in three municipalities (Compostela, Monkayo, New Bataan) and 15 barangays in Compostela Valley. Plan will implement in Baganga, Boston, Cateel and in 12 schools in Davao Oriental. WFP will implement in the two provinces focusing on the PLGUs, Monkayo, New Bataan, Baganga and Cateel.

Activities to be supported include building the capacity of the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Councils (PDRRMC), Municipal DRRMCs and Barangay DRRMCs; assisting the LGUs in incorporating DRR into their provincial, municipal and barangay development plans; establishing early warning systems; building vital infrastructure; enhancing preparedness and raising awareness of communities and schools; providing modest emergency equipment; and implementing small-scale DRR projects designed to reduce vulnerabilities.

Benjamin Hemingway, Regional Advisor for East Asia and the Pacific, Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance, USAID; Carin van der Hor, Country Director of Plan Interntional; Boy Abunda, Plan Ambassador; and Joseph Curry, Country Representative of Catholic Relief Services also attended the launch. UN/DSWD