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A sum of $1.2 million has been set aside in the 2008/09 Estimates of Expenditure for a project which is aimed at building disaster resilient communities.
This will be done by strengthening the national and parish response capacity and developing a culture of disaster preparedness.
Under the project, disaster management committees are to be established, the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) institutional capacity is to be increased, and a high degree of stakeholder ownership established. The project will also assess actual and likely damage by various disasters to specific vulnerable locations.
Funded by the Government ($750,000) and the Canadian International Development Agency ($450,000), the project began in February of this year and is scheduled for completion in March 2011.
For this fiscal period, it is anticipated that under the project management component, a detailed project design will be done, and a financing agreement established with CIDA. Also, a project steering committee will be set up, and a project implementation unit created to manage the project.
Meanwhile, as it relates to damage assessment, disaster modeling, other experiments will be carried out at various sites, as well as public awareness activities. An assessment of past and potential damage to specific locations, will also be conducted.
Under the formation of zonal committees component, a zonal disaster response committee will be established, and training in disaster management provided. This is in addition to a public awareness and education programme. There will be response and capacity building for 10 parishes, and a participatory process of hazard identification and mitigation planning established.
In addition, the ODPEM website will be redesigned, and a virtual library established for easy retrieval of disaster management information.