Last 26 September 2019, the UP Resilience Institute (UP RI) participated in the “Project Strengthening Urban Communities’ Capacity to Endure Severe Shocks (SUCCESS) Closing and the launching Launching of Supporting Household and Local Government Unit Awareness and Knowledge for Earthquake Preparedness (SHAKE)” at Sofitel Philippines Plaza Manila. The event, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), was organized by the Catholic Relief Services (CRS). Project SUCCESS and Project SHAKE both aim to strengthen the capacity of local government units and vulnerable communities against floods and earthquakes.
During the closing ceremony for Project SUCCESS, the CRS and the participants shared experiences and milestones they have accomplished with the help of the UP National Operational Assessment of Hazards (NOAH) Center, core component of the UP RI, and other government agencies, in the past years.In 2017, UP RI researchers trained the participants in mapping building footprints and critical facilities using OpenStreetMap (OSM). CRS also assisted 22 at-risk barangays around Metro Manila in formulating Disaster Risk Reduction Management Plans such as household flood contingency plans and community flood drills.
During the event, Mr. Jude Vito Agapito, a researcher from the UP RI, was able to converse with two event speakers. Ms. Josephine Juanite, a solid waste management (SWM) collector, shared how Project SUCCESS helped her in life. Project SUCCESS gave her the opportunity to become a Solid Waste Management collector in her barangay. This job enabled her to get herself out of poverty. By being a SWM collector, she also helped her community reduce harmful effects of waste through solid waste management. In concluding her story, she mentioned that this job enabled her to buy a lot for her family.
Ms. Lilian Narida, Vice President for Finance at One Renewable Energy, on the other hand, imparted her company’s story and contribution in Project SUCCESS. Her company was able to set up an accessible, low cost, clean solar water purification system. Through One Renewable Energy’s low-cost water system project, several barangays are now able to enjoy low-cost water systems. This project also opened opportunities for communities to generate more jobs.
The latter part of the event was dedicated to the launching of the SHAKE Project which aims to engage, assist, and educate local government units and stakeholders in earthquake preparedness. Participants were excited and hopeful for the success of the SHAKE Project. The expected output of the project is a more knowledgeable local government units and communities in connection to earthquakes, as well as effective household plans and increased access for families to financial resources in times of crisis.