ARMM, humanitarian organizations celebrate World Humanitarian Day
Cotabato City (August 20, 2015) – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and Mindanao humanitarian organizations observed the World Humanitarian Day on Wednesday, August 19.
In the town of North Upi in the province of Maguindanao, residents and chairpersons of 10 barangays, including town Mayor Ramon Piang Sr., attended the event held at Barangay Rempes. The area is a community of indigenous peoples, particularly the Tedurays.
A highlight of the event was the launching of the community-driven disaster response and preparedness program. The program was a grant project of T’duray Days School Project (TDSP) together with ARMM’s Enhancing Governance Accountability and Engagement, which is funded by the United States Agency for International Development.
Ten barangays of North Upi, Maguindanao were the recipients of the project. Nolie Acosta, program manager of TDSP, said the initiative aims at inculcating in the minds of each family the need to be prepared in times of disaster. Furthermore, he said that it also aims at making North Upi a “resilient, transparent and adaptive community.”
“Sa programang ito, dahan dahan natin mababago at ma-motivate ang isipan ng ating mga pamilya pagdating sa disaster-preparedness (Through this program, we will slowly change and motivate the minds of each family on disaster-preparedness),” Acosta said.
“Kailangan maintindihan ng bawat pamilya ang mga hazards sa kanilang paligid at kanilang kakayanan sa pagresponde sa mga sakuna (Each family should know the hazards in its community and how to respond during calamities),” he added.
Mayor Piang said the family-based disaster program is a big help to the municipality particularly to recipient barangays. He further said that each family should be “aware and ready for everything and make disaster (preparedness) a family business”.
The celebration also featured other activities such as tree planting, display of Information and Education Campaign materials and free consultation for pregnant women.
Signing of local leaders on a commitment wall to show support on the advocacy of the ARMM for disaster risk reduction and management at the community level and groundbreaking ceremony of a halfway shelter for pregnant women were also held during the event.
The World Humanitarian Day is an internationally celebrated event every 19th of August. It aims at raising awareness on humanitarian assistance worldwide. In ARMM, World Humanitarian Day was formally celebrated in 2013. Last year, the theme of the celebration was acknowledging humanitarian heroes.
This year, the United Nations focused its campaign on exposing to the public the “human face” of issues surrounding displacements, insecurity, issues of durable solutions, as well as inspirational stories of resilience and hope. (Bureau of Public Information)