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SAAD joins effort to enhance social protection against disasters

MAKATI CITY, METRO MANILA, December 10, 2019 – The Special Area for Agricultural Development (SAAD) Program took part in a knowledge sharing activity entitled, “Scaling Up Forecast Based Early Action and Shock Responsive Social Protection (SRSP) with Innovative Use of Climate Risk Information for Disaster Resilience in ASEAN” and “MOVEUP4: Mindanao: Moving Urban Poor Communities In Mindanao Towards Resilience”, held at the New World Hotel Makati.

The aim of the activity was to discuss existing programs that mitigate natural disasters such as typhoons as well man-made occurrences such as insurgencies.

The project is a joint effort of the World Food Programme (WFO), Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), and the German Red Cross, and is funded by the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations.

Mr. Douglas Broderick, Country Director of the WFP Philippines, delivered the opening remarks wherein he reiterated the fragility of food security in the country during trying times such as natural disasters, climate change, and terrorist activities. Assisting the poor, particularly those in Mindanao, will help achieve the second Sustainable Development Goal of the United Nations which is zero-hunger.

Ms. Ruth Honculada-Georget, Senior Consultant at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), made an overview about social protection, defined as a human right and a set of policies and programs designed to decrease poverty. Also discussed were managing shocks affecting income in the education, healthcare and nutrition sectors and removing gender discrimination when subscribing to social protection services.

Georget also led the discussion on the creation of a roadmap for establishing a Risk-Informed Shock Responsive Social Protection System. Issues raised were such as lack of funding, focus on relief efforts than preparation before disasters, intervention providers delivering less than required, and the limited capacities of disaster risk information systems to inform social protection delivery mechanisms.

Ms. Ma. Ruzella Quilla, National Programme Development and Coordination Specialist of FAO, led the program overview and discussion of the projects, SRSP with Innovative Use of Climate Risk Information for Disaster Resilience in ASEAN: Philippines,  and early actions to mitigate effects of El Nino-induced drought within a conflict context in Mindanao.

Ms. Isabelle Lacson, Program Policy Officer of WFP, shared the importance and benefits of a Forecast-Based Financing (FBF) of projects to quickly respond to disasters before they arrive, while Mr. Damien Riquet of the German Red Cross shared the application of Forecast-Based Early Action during Typhoon Kammuri.

The SAAD Program hopes to help farmer-partners become more resilient to natural and man-made disasters and occurrences to sustain their livelihood. ###

Writer: Ian Kevin M. Sevilla, SAAD National Program Management Office.


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