JIS News

About 28 local communities are being targeted for assistance in developing disaster mitigation plans over the next three years, under the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)-funded Building Disaster Resilient Communities (BDRC) project.
Project Co-ordinator, Joanna Oglvie, said that the initiative, funded in the sum of J$63 million, aims to establish partnerships among key Government and community stakeholders, in order to establish sustainable zonal disaster committees and community groups.
Citizens will be encouraged to take on their civic responsibility for disaster mitigation, involving planning and response, in collaboration with various agencies and authorities that have responsibility for this undertaking at the national level.
Addressing the Jamaica Information Service’s (JIS) weekly Think Tank discussion forum at the agency’s Half-Way-Tree Road office in Kingston on Wednesday (Sept. 2), Ms. Oglvie said work is currently being pursued with 12 of the communities shortlisted for focus this year.
The communities are: Berrydale and Swift River, Portland; Trinityville, St. Thomas; Old Harbour Bay, Gregory Park and Waterford, St. Catherine; Rocky Point, Clarendon; Alligator Pond, Ginger Hill/Pisgah, and New River, St. Elizabeth; McNeil Lands, Westmoreland; and Moneague, St. Ann.
Entities partnering in the undertaking include: the Ministry of Labour and Social Security; Jamaica Red Cross; Social Development Commission (SDC); and the Parish Councils, all of which are expected to play key roles in the process.
She said that, for example, the SDC will play an active role in drafting and pulling together the community disaster plan, and ensure that the entire community is involved. The disaster mitigation plan for Trinityville is scheduled to be unveiled next week
“We are very excited about the future of this project. What we want to encourage is a sustainable approach to doing disaster mitigation and response,” Ms. Oglvie said.

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