Tackling disaster resiliency for businesses

On November 21, National Resilience Council (NRC) President Antonia Yulo Loyzaga and SM Prime and NRC Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Consultant VADM Alexander Pama appeared on CNN Philippines’ On the Record to discuss how businesses can prepare for and bounce forward from disasters.

Video courtesy of CNN Philippines

Adopt-A-City Program featured on Pinoy Panalo Ka

NRC Executive Director Malu Erni with Pinoy Panalo Ka Host Mare Yao.

On July 5, National Resilience Council (NRC) Executive Director Malu Erni sat down with Pinoy Panalo Ka Host Mare Yao to talk about the ADOPT-A-CITY Program. The program is a city-specific partnership model that ensures direct involvement from the private sector, and forges strengthened collaborations between and among various sectors. Ms. Erni also emphasized how this latest initiative would play a critical role in implementing NRC’s Resilient LGU Program.

The full interview can be viewed below or on Pinoy Panalo Ka’s official Facebook.

(Ep 18) Pinoy, Panalo Ka!

Panoorin ang Pinoy, Panalo Ka!

Posted by Pinoy Panalo Ka on Sunday, July 21, 2019
Adopt-A-City Program feature starts on the 27th minute. Video courtesy of Pinoy Panalo Ka.

NRC presents resilience work at LCF CSR Expo

Last July 4, National Resilience Council (NRC) Executive Director Marilou Erni showcased NRC’s work in a session on Disaster Emergency Response and Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience during the 18th League of Corporate Foundations’ (LCF) Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Expo at the Philippine International Convention Center in Pasay City. With the theme “Toward Collective Impact: Collaborations that Work!”, the two-day LCF CSR Expo gathered different sectors to discuss opportunities for impactful collaborations, learn from each other about best CSR practices and to promote a common framework for addressing pressing national issues and for achieving sustainable development.

Ms. Erni began her presentation with the latest World Risk Index. The Index reported that the Philippines remained third most at risk in the world—after Vanuatu and Tonga—and that the country was rated very high in terms of vulnerability, and high on exposure, susceptibility and lack of coping capacities. While showing a 2019 Global Assessment Report (GAR) infographic, she added that there is a need for a shift from disaster response to risk prevention through risk-informed systems-based approaches and decision making.

Ms. Marilou Erni represented NRC at the 18th LCF CSR Expo in Pasay City.

NRC has always emphasized that the complex and dynamic nature of risk, and the Philippines’ unique patterns of development, required trans-disciplinary approaches that needed the active participation of different sectors and communities themselves. Through a whole-of-society effort, this would bridge the critical gaps between science, policy and practice. Thus, ARISE Philippines and the NRC are working together to advance science and technology-based public-private partnerships in the attainment of the shared goals of Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Climate Agreement and the New Urban Agenda.

Ms. Erni went on to discuss NRC’s Resilient LGU Program, a three-year pathway that uniquely integrates leadership and governance and science and technology, and builds the internal capacities of local government units for them to develop and manage their own resilience initiatives. With the help of other sectors and by anchoring on international and national frameworks, NRC also developed its Resilient Local Government Systems Scorecard, a guide with over 90 indicators organized according to five cross-cutting pillars: Leadership and Governance, Human Development, Local Economy, Infrastructure and Environment.

Ms. Erni also talked about the ADOPT-A-CITY Program, NRC’s latest innovation which aimed to strengthen public-private partnerships and encourage direct private sector investment in local disaster risk reduction and long-term resilience efforts. The city-specific partnership model was launched last June 17 through a signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between SM Prime and Cagayan de Oro City. Addressing the participants, she encouraged the members of LCF to join the call for resilience work, highlighting SM Prime Executive Committee Chair and NRC Co-Chair for Private Sector Mr. Hans Sy’s message that “Disaster Risk Reduction makes good business sense.”

Speakers were given recognition after the session on Disaster Emergency Response and Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience.

“We have to transform our frame of mind, our thinking, and our development model, to make us less exposed and vulnerable to climate change and disasters,” shared Ms. Erni, quoting NRC Convenor Amb. Roberto Romulo. “While resilience is our goal, transformation in terms of evidence-informed leadership, knowledge, competencies and skills is critical to achieving it. This type of transformative leadership must be achieved through multi-stakeholder partnerships at both national and local levels.”

Photos by NRC.

NRC President speaks at ASEP International Convention

Ms. Antonia Yulo Loyzaga, President of the National Resilience Council (NRC), graced the 19th ASEP International Convention (AIC) as a keynote speaker at Crowne Plaza Galleria in Quezon City. With the theme “Structural Engineering for Infrastructure Resilience”, the 3-day convention organized by the Association for Structural Engineers in the Philippines—held from May 30 to June 1—was an opportunity to discuss the role of structural engineers in building a disaster resilient Philippines.

NRC President Antonia Yulo Loyzaga delivered her keynote presentation at the 19th AIC.

In her presentation, Ms. Loyzaga briefly introduced NRC’s work on disaster risk reduction and resilience. She then set the tone by citing data from the Center for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED), mentioning that 3,000 disasters had occurred worldwide since 2007. While there had been a decrease in deaths, there was an increase in economic loss and damage, most notably in developing countries. Ms. Loyzaga added that most disasters had been in Asia, killing more people due to earthquakes rather than the more frequent storms and floods.

To paint a picture of the Philippines’ situation, Ms. Loyzaga said the country ranked third in the latest World Risk Index. In 2018 alone, studies by CRED and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) indicated that the country ranked seventh in total disaster death toll, eighth among the Top 10 deadliest disasters and second to India in the Top 10 countries with the most number of people affected.

With all these data, she shared four key messages as a takeaway for the participants of the convention: working on disaster risk reduction alone is not enough; disasters and development are linked; addressing infrastructure needs means dealing with complex adaptive networks; and incorporating leadership and governance prove to be critical in the shared journey to resilience.

Awarding of keynote speakers at the 19th AIC.

“The real engines of growth are human ingenuity, professionalism and productivity,” reminded Ms. Loyzaga at the end of her presentation. “The country needs ASEP to safeguard these and ensure our sustainable and resilient future. Together, we hope to help build a bridge to Resilience as we work together to achieve convergence, strategic coherence and continuity.”

NRC President Antonia Yulo Loyzaga and ASEP President Engr. Gilbert Magbutay during the signing of the NRC Pledge of Partnership for a Resilient Philippines.

ASEP President Engr. Gilbert Magbutay joined Ms. Loyzaga onstage afterwards to sign the NRC Pledge of Partnership for a Resilient Philippines. By signing the agreement, ASEP affirmed its support to the NRC in its pursuit of its resilience agenda.

Photos by ASEP and NRC

NRC president chairs panels at disaster management congress

National Resilience Council (NRC) President Ms. Antonia Yulo Loyzaga joined the January 29-February 1, 2019 World Congress on Disaster Management (WCDM) in Mumbai, India, where she presented during a plenary on “Response, Relief, Reconstruction, Recovery & Development” and chaired the sessions on “Agriculture, Livelihoods and Resilience” and “Disaster Resilient Cities”.

Ms. Antonia Yulo Loyzaga with two-term National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) Member and Former Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) Director General, Mr. K.M. Singh (center).

The 3-day event is an initiative of the Disaster Management Initiatives and Convergence Society (DMICS)—a civil society organization pursuing the integration of disaster management to government and public policy—which gathers experts from around the world to highlight the interaction among science, policy and practices. Through such interactions, the Congress aimed to develop a common understanding of risk, and to gain ground on risk reduction and resilience building.

NRC executive director presents scorecard at UNDRR events

Participants of the ISDR-Asia Partnership (IAP) Forum

National Resilience Council (NRC) Executive Director Ms. Malu Erni represented the organization at the ISDR-Asia Partnership (IAP) Forum and the Regional Consultative Workshop on Disaster Risk Reduction Strategies, both held in Bangkok, Thailand.

.Ms. Malu Erni panels a discussion on localizing the Sendai Framework.

The 2018 IAP Forum, held from 11-12 December 2018, served as a platform to assess the implementation of the Sendai Framework and Asia Regional Plan. With the help of members from the UN, international, national, regional and intergovernmental organizations that work on disaster risk reduction, the event also paved the way to discuss better opportunities for pushing the DRR agenda. At the event, Ms. Erni paneled for a discussion on localizing the Sendai Framework.

Ms. Malu Erni with a graphic summary of NRC’s work courtesy of Pushpin Visual Solutions, a creative consultancy based in the Philippines.

The December 13-14 consultative workshop, meanwhile, gathered DRR practitioners to focus on attaining the Sendai Framework Target ‘E’ through development of national and local DRR Strategies. Given NRC’s work in the Philippines, Ms. Erni introduced the NRC Resilient Local Government Systems Scorecard and showcased its localized and contextualized approach to addressing disaster and climate resilience.