A regional workshop on “Strengthening the Preparedness for Response by the Government and Local Humanitarian Organisations”  was  organized  as  a part Asian Disaster Preparedness Center’s (ADPC) regional initiative to strengthen the disaster preparedness and response capacity of Government and Local Humanitarian Organisations in Asia.

The workshop held in Siem Reap, Cambodia and 26 Participants representing various sectors such as Government, NGO, CBO and Corporate from 6 countries from South Asia (Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Nepal) and Southeast Asia (Myanmar, Cambodia, Philippines) participated in the workshop. The workshop was facilitated by ADPC regional offices and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Each country group identified the key focal points in the country. For Sri Lanka CHA is identified as the focal point for humanitarian sector.   The focal points are expected to conduct the in-country baseline survey to identify the existing capacity and requirements to strengthen the disaster preparedness and response capacity of various stakeholders in the country.

1.Strengthening Government and Local Humanitarian Organizations capacity on Preparedness for Emergency Response

Under the regional initiative on strengthening preparedness of Government and Local Humanitarian actors for Emergency Response in Sri Lanka by the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center’s (ADPC) a Baseline Assessment will take place as the first step. The Data Collection will be done adopting various methods. Training for enumerators will be conducted by ADPC in-collaboration with Disaster Management Center (DMC) and Center for Humanitarian Affairs (CHA) at CHA on 31st May 2017.

CHA attended the Emergency Response Meeting conducted by the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) on 23rd May. Also extended support in sharing information and translation during the emergency situation.

2.Socialization Workshop on Strengthening Government and Local Humanitarian Organizations capacity on Preparedness for Emergency Response

Following the regional initiative by the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center’s (ADPC) to strengthen the disaster preparedness and response capacity of Government and Local Humanitarian Organisations in Asia, a  Project Socialization Workshop  was Jointly organized by Disaster Management Center (DMC), Ministry of Disaster Management and ADPC in collaboration with Center for Humanitarian Affairs (CHA) on 6th April 2017 at BMICH, Colombo.

The workshop aimed at sharing the knowledge and experience of various stakeholders on current emergency response strategies and identifying the challenges of emergency response mechanism in the country in taking forward the project “Strengthening the capacity of Government and Local humanitarian actors on Emergency Response in Sri Lanka.”

Hon. Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, Minister for Disaster Management, Mr. G.L Senadeera, Director General, DMC, Mr. Sisira Kumara, Head, Training Services Department, ADPC, Mr. Jeevan Thiagarajah, Chairman, CHA and many national / local government officials, representatives from I/NGOs,  UN Agencies, Private sector, Academia and Media were in attendance.

In his key note, Hon. Anura Priyadharshana Yapa, Minister for Disaster Management, highlighted the losses due to disasters in the past and emphasized on taking pro-active measures and local level needs to be considered. Also he mentioned that this project will help in identifying ideal locations to mitigate disaster situations and requested for support in response preparedness.

During the technical session of the workshop following topics were discussed in five groups;

  • Formulation of Local Humanitarian Partnership for Preparedness for Response in Sri Lanka.
  • Strengthening Community Capacity for Preparedness and Response.
  • Existing legal framework and institutional capacity of Government agencies for Emergency Response in Sri Lanka.
  • The UN, INGO role on Strengthening Local Humanitarian Partnership on Emergency Response.
  • Linking media, private sector and academia for better Preparedness for Response in Sri Lanka.

The group discussion on “Strengthening Community Capacity for Preparedness and Response” was facilitated by Mr. Jeevan Thiagarajah, Chairman, CHA.