DILG Secreatry Ismael D. Sueno.
DILG Secreatry Ismael D. Sueno.

This National Disaster Consciousness Month, Interior and Local Government Secretary Ismael D. Sueno urges the public to start disaster preparedness in their own families and homes.

“Ang tamang paghahanda ay nagsisimula sa lebel ng mga kabahayan. Huwag tayong maging kampante at huwag ipagpabukas ang paghahanda. Ramdam na natin ang malalakas na pag-ulan at hangin,” said Sueno.

“More than anybody else, families should know their roles and understand practical tips in disaster preparedness, that is why we have the Gabay at Mapa para sa Listong Pamilyang Pilipino,” he added.

The Gabay at Mapa is a family guide to action before, during and after a disaster. It requires families to make a household plan determining their evacuation routes, family meeting points, and safe places in their home.

“To learn more about Gabay at Mapa and other Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) programs of the DILG, an exhibit is open for public viewing in the DILG-NAPOLCOM Center lobby in Quezon City this July, the National Disaster Consciousness Month. It showcases a variety of informative reference materials and illustrations on DRR,” said Sueno.

On the other hand, DILG Undersecretary for Local Government Austere A. Panadero said, “Ang DRR exhibit tulad nito ay kailangan upang magsilbing paalala kung anu-ano ang dapat gampanan ng bawat isa; at pakiusap ay ikuwento niyo rin sa inyong mga kapitbahay kung paano maghanda sa lindol, baha, bagyo at iba pang sakuna.”

Local Government Academy (LGA) Executive Director Marivel C. Sacendoncillo pointed out that disaster preparedness is everyone’s business and a shared responsibility. “Ang sakuna ay walang pinipiling kasarian, edad, at katayuan sa buhay. Lahat ay dapat maging maalam at handa. Subalit mahalagang unahin natin ang kaligtasan ng mga may kapansanan, senior citizens at mga bata.

The NDRRMC through the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) launches this year’s observance of the National Disaster Consciousness Month with the theme “Kahandaan at Pagtugon sa Sakuna, Tungkulin ng Bawat Isa”.

DILG in Eastern Visayas likewise joined in the launching and exhibit last July 4, 2016. The program started with a mass at the Leyte provincial capitol, followed by a motorcade around downtown Tacloban City and nearby areas. DILG Tacloban City Director Atty. Darwin Bibar in his welcome speech in behalf of Regional Director Pedro A. Noval Jr., mentioned the efforts of the agency to promote disaster preparedness among LGUs, communities and households themselves.

DILG highlighted in its exhibit the features and procedures in Operation Listo, projects completed under DILG- Recovery Assistance on Yolanda (RAY), Build Back Better Operations Manual produced with the Australian Volunteers for International Development (AVID), the coffee table book on After Yolanda, and various technical assistance by the department on DRRM and Climate Change Adaptation.

OCD announced that this year’s theme highlights the core intention of this annual observance to make people own DRR a personal responsibility and that surviving, outlasting the ravages of any hazard and making communities resilient is a duty of every Filipino.

Executive Order 137 s. 1999 declares the month of July of every year as the National Disaster Consciousness Month which aims to increase the awareness of every Filipino on natural and man-made disasters for a better appreciation of the government’s disaster preparedness programs.