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Tuesday, 25 July 2017 22:44

Partnerships essential to building regional resilience to disasters Featured

The importance of partnerships in building a more resilient region against the impact of disasters was the highlight at the official launch ceremony of the 10th Caribbean Conference on Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM10). The launch was held on June 30th 2017 at the Melia Nassau Beach Resort in Nassau, The Bahamas.

The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), in collaboration with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA – The Bahamas), will host the 10th Caribbean Conference on Comprehensive Disaster Management under the theme “CDM: The Road to Resilience. Check Point 2017 – Building Resilience through Partnerships” at the Melia Nassau Beach Resort in Nassau, The Bahamas December 4 – 9, 2017.

The 2017 Conference will continue to use such a platform to report on the progress of implementation of the Comprehensive Disaster Management Strategy 2014-2024 and to build on the Strategy’s overall goal of realizing safer, more resilient and sustainable CDEMA Participating States through Comprehensive Disaster Management. Utilizing the ‘checkpoint’ approach to monitoring the progress of the 2014-2024 CDM Strategy, participants will be presented with the Caribbean Assessment Report (CAR), which will provide decision-makers with information related to progress, gaps and lessons learnt towards the achievement of CDM.

“The road to resilience will require investment…as we face more frequent violent storms we must also include substantial financing for disaster resilience”, said the Honorable Peter Turnquest, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, The Commonwealth of The Bahamas during his delivery of the keynote address at the launch ceremony. The Hon. Deputy Prime Minister Turnquest also emphasised that despite our vulnerability to disasters and the fact that we cannot prevent them, the importance of being prepared and building resilient infrastructure cannot be overstated.

In his opening remarks, Captain Stephen Russell, Director of NEMA reiterated the value of partnerships in disaster management. “We, in the government system, cannot do it alone, therefore, we must partner with our local and regional partners to help us with our efforts. CDEMA has been of tremendous support to the Bahamas’ disaster mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery programs over the years”, said Captain Russell.

The Conference will also create a space for reflection on the impact of the CDEMA System in advancing disaster resilience over the past 25 years.

CDEMA’s Executive Director, Mr Ronald H. Jackson, acknowledged partners’ commitment and continued support, including the private sector, government agencies, development partners and regional institutions, into the realization of national resilience and the wider CDM Strategy. “As partners in this venture, we continue to invest time and resources in this event because we believe the knowledge, ideas and results shared not only serves to advance our collective efforts to provide a safe and harmonious environment for our citizens but also a mechanism for us to keep our resilience agenda on track.”

CDM10’s programme will be structured around the four priority areas of the CDM Strategy and within the context of the conference theme. These include: building and reflecting resilience through institutional partnerships; building resilience knowledge; building resilience through ongoing professional development; partnering with communities and youth for resilience and building sector partnerships for resilience.

As a fitting mark of partnerships for building resilience, CDEMA and NEMA will also partner with the Rotary Clubs of The Bahamas in support of a charity 5k walk/run event, which will be held during the 2017 Conference and will benefit a community in The Bahamas that was impacted by recent Hurricanes.

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