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The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) will, this fiscal year, continue to train emergency response teams, implement community micro-mitigation projects, and access more data for hazard risk reduction implementation.

These activities will be carried out with budgetary support of $32 million, which has been allocated in the 2011/12 Estimates of Expenditure, now before the House of Representatives.   

The overall objectives of the project are to: improve disaster management communication and planning systems at the national, parish, and community levels; develop emergency response and disaster management plans for communities selected under the project; strengthen national, parish, and community disaster response capacity; ensure a high degree of stakeholder ownership, through active participation in the process, from hazard identification to development of mitigation plans; and develop a culture of disaster preparedness in the island, and increased civic action in disaster mitigation.

Up to September 2010, partners had been engaged; 26 community emergency response committees had been established and strengthened; 26 vulnerable communities were selected; 26 members of certified emergency response teams were trained in various aspects of disaster management; and vulnerability assessments and development of community master plans, were conducted.

Additionally, micro-mitigation plans were developed, and some 10 community micro-mitigation projects were started.

The Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), is providing $15.4 million of the funding for the fiscal year.

 

By ALPHEA SAUNDERS, JIS Reporter