ADOPT A CITY: NRC Partners with SM Prime and Cagayan de Oro City

The National Resilience Council (NRC) launched on June 17, 2019 the ADOPT-A-CITY Program through a signing of a Memorandum of Understanding among SM Prime Executive Committee Chairman and NRC Co-Chair for Private Sector Hans Sy, Cagayan de Oro City Mayor Oscar Moreno and NRC President Ma. Antonia Yulo Loyzaga. The tripartite with NRC, SM Prime and Cagayan de Oro City is the first partnership formed under the new program.

Video courtesy of CNN Philippines

Guided by its belief in the importance of public-private partnerships in promoting a disaster and climate resilient Philippines, the NRC created the ADOPT-A-CITY Program as a city-specific partnership model responding to the Philippines’ commitments under the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, the advancement of the Sustainable Development Goals, the agreements on Climate and the New Urban Agenda. NRC matches partners’ resources (scientific knowledge, technology, funding, services, equipment and logistics) to the strategic needs of the local government units (LGUs) undergoing the Resilient LGU Program, NRC’s 3-year program integrating Science & Technology and Leadership & Governance.

In photo: (standing L-R) SM Supermalls’ VP for corporate compliance Liza Silerio and COO Steven Tan, CDO local economic investment promotions officer Eileen San Juan, NRC executive director Malu Erni; (seated L-R) Hans Sy, CDO Mayor Oscar Moreno, and NRC president Antonia Yulo Loyzaga. Photo courtesy of SM.
The launch of the ADOPT-A-CITY Program was published in Malaya, The Philippine Star and The Manila Times. Press releases courtesy of SM.

By pledging its support, a private sector corporation can directly invest in the city’s disaster risk reduction and long-term resilience efforts. The program also uses a whole-of-society approach and strengthens private sector collaboration with local governments, academic partners and communities themselves in co-creating science and technology-based solutions and capacity building for evidence-informed risk governance. This involves structural interventions and projects to address specific social, economic and environmental exposure and vulnerability. It not only enables the LGU to bounce back after a hazard strikes, but it also prepares and prevents a disaster to “bounce forward” together in ways to reduce future risk.

For more information on the NRC’s program, go to

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