The whole month of July is declared as the National Disaster Resilience Month based on Executive Order 29 that President Rodrigo R. Duterte signed on June 28, 2017.
The same order followed Executive Order 137 which President Joseph Estrada signed on August 10, 1999.
The Duterte EO specifies: “(T)here is a need to promote the significance of disaster resilience which pertains to the ability of individuals, communities, organizations, and states to adapt to and recover from the effects of hazards and disasters through effective risk management.”
The order also cites the passage of Republic Act 10121, the Philippine Disaster Reduction and Management Act of 2010, the law that orders the establishment of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Framework.
The framework, it points out, “envisions `safer, adaptive, and disaster resilient-Filipino communities towards sustainable development’ and conveys a paradigm shift from reactive to proactive approach to increase people’s resilience and decrease their vulnerabilities.”
The last part of the last paragraph above tries to impart the importance of preparedness in facing calamities as based on the latest Global Peace Index, the country is at the top of the list of those facing the risks of climate change hazards.
There must be a strong collaboration among government agencies as well as between these agencies and the private sector to be able to come up with a comprehensive program that will highlight the need for preparedness especially among the so-called vulnerable sectors.
The executive order is a reminder that the Filipino communities, particularly those who are members of the vulnerable sectors, need to be assisted so they are able to wade through the impact of calamities.