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.

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.

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.

Asian Preparedness Partnership (APP)

Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) has been contributing in making Asia-Pacific safer by strengthening disaster resilience at all levels. Established in 1986, ADPC is an independent regional organization. ADPC launched the Asian Preparedness Partnership (APP) on 29th August 2017 in Bangkok. The goal of APP is to improve emergency preparedness to response and recovery from disasters in Cambodia, Myanmar, Nepal, Philippines, Pakistan and Sri Lanka

APP Sri Lanka Country Team with colleagues from ADPC and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Mr. Hans Guttman, Executive Director, ADPC and Mr. Jeevan Thiagarajah, Chairman, CHA with the MOI in Bangkok

Dr. Valerie Nkamgang Bemo, Deputy Director in the Global Development Office of the President at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation handing over a APP partner memento to Mr. Jeevan Thiagarajah, Chairman, CHA in Bangkok

APP Communication Strategy Development Workshop and Training

Enhancing Humanitarian Information Management and Knowledge Exchange was one of the initiatives by APP in achieving its objectives. Hence, a Communication Strategy Development Workshop and Training was organised by ADPC on 30th & 31st August in Bangkok, Thailand. Two communication focal points from each partner country (Cambodia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, and Sri Lanka) participated in the workshop. DMC and CHA being the partners of APP from Sri Lanka, 2 focal points were appointed from the respective organisations.

Developing an online platform (one-stop knowledge hub) for sharing of information regarding disaster preparedness and emergency response in the countries was one of the activities initiated under APP to attain better coordination of humanitarian actions. During the workshop the web portal (https:// app.adpc.net/) was introduced and training was provided on content management. Also the team worked on the communication strategy and put forward suggestions to the Working Groups on Development of Roadmaps for APP.

CHA being one of the focal points in Sri Lanka will play an important role in enhancing Humanitarian Information Management and Knowledge Exchange of APP within the country and the region in collaboration with the government and private sectors.

Communication Focal Points team with Mr. Hans Guttman, Executive Director, ADPC

Consultation session with Local Non-Government Organizations Networks on strengthening disaster preparedness

The Sri Lanka preparedness Partnership (SLPP) established with Government, Local Non-Government Organizations Networks and Private Sector as a national level platform for strengthening the emergency response preparedness in the country. The Disaster Management Center (DMC), National Disaster Relief Services Center (NDRSC), Center for Humanitarian Affairs (CHA) and Chamber of Commerce (CCC) partnered with SLPP which aims at strengthening the preparedness capacity of Government and local humanitarian actors for effective emergency response. Four high-risk Districts of Ratnapura, Kalutara, Batticaloa and Puttlam have been selected to pilot the project activities.

As an initial step CHA organized and conducted consultation session with the LNGO networks in Kalutara, Ratnapura, Batticaloa and Puttalam districts who have an interest in supporting and or intervening in disaster  preparedness and response and to obtain –

  • Geographical area of operation of members
  • Services that can be offered
  • contact details to trigger the delivery of potential services
  • Potential surge capacity level that can be handled by the members
  • Areas of capacity building required and gender disaggregated numbers for participation
  • Recommendations to improve coordination for response

Consultation Session in Batticaloa on 9th November 2017

Consultation Session in Ratnapura on 20th November 2017

Welcome and introduction with the presence of Assistant District Secretary, Ratnapura

Consultation Session in Kalutara on 27th November 2017

GA Kalutara is addressing the participants

Consultation Session in Puttalam on 29th November 2017

Asian Preparedness Partnership (APP) for Strengthening Government and Local Humanitarian Organizations capacity on Preparedness for Emergency Response

Following the launch of APP in Bangkok in August 2017, The Sri Lanka Preparedness Partnership (SLPP) was formed with DMC, NDRC, CHA and Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. Partners meet regularly on planning activities

The discussion was on finalizing the governance structure of APP Sri Lanka and way forward in achieving the objectives of SLPP and APP

Climate Change and Risk Reduction

CHA met with DG and senior staff at DMC and discussioned on climate change and risk reduction. Concepts for mitigation against climate change were shared and expressed willingness to support in planning and implementation of activities.

CHA proposed to undertake activities promoting De silting and ground water recharging to mitigate against climate change and drought in Kayts which has 54 silted ponds as a replicable example to apply nationally in select locations. Greening costal areas is an additional consideration.