CamSur celebrates Resilience Month with marathon, rescue march
By Jan Marie Ramos PILI, Camarines Sur --- With the theme, “Katatagan sa kalamidad ay makakamtan kapag sapat ang kaalaman sa kahandaan,” the Provincial Government of Camarines Sur through the Environment, Disaster Management, and Emergency Response Office (EDMERO) was one with the nation in celebrating the National Disasater Resilience Month last July 1 to July 5, 2018 at the Provincial Capitol Complex, Cadlan, Pili. “For five days, we slept in tents despite the hot and rainy weathers. We also underwent many challenges. But we also experience these in our job, and the purpose of this event is to remind us that despite experiencing difficult and inconvenient situations, we save lives; for us, that is real happiness.” said Mario Reburiano, Jr., Senior Fire Officer II and Team Coach of BFP CamSur. One of the main highlights of the celebration was the Rescue MARCH (Mass Assembly for Rescue and Care for Humanity), a 13.7 km walk which started from Basilica Minore, passed through Metro Naga, and ended at the Provincial Capitol Complex. The activity was a simulation exercise of infrastructure breakdowns where rescuers were challenged to travel on foot to respond to emergency cases. Various activities on the four thematic areas of disaster, namely, disaster prevention and mitigation, disaster preparedness, disaster response, and disaster rehabilitation and recovery were held in this celebration. These were the Simulation Exercises, Rescue Olympics, and Schools’ DRRM First Aid Olympics. In the Simulation Exercises, participants underwent four challenges caused by a simulation of a major disaster. The exercises include Water Search and Rescue (WASAR), Pre-Hospital Care, Rope Rescue, and Fire-fighting. Representatives from all participating agencies joined this event. Afterwards, rescue teams from the provincial government also demonstrated their effective DRRM skills under the same challenges to further prepare the participants for the Rescue Olympics. The Philippine National Police (PNP), Bureau of Fire and Protection (BFP), and the municipalities of Pasacao, Tigaon, and Calabanga competed in the Rescue Olympics under four challenges: Pre-hospital Care, WASAR, Rope Rescue, and Fire-fighting. The Philippine Red Cross (PRC), Philippine Army, Philippine Coast Guard, and Region V BFP judged each challenge according to their areas of expertise. The provincial government awarded cash prizes to all participating municipalities and agencies. Under the municipalities challenge, Calabanga received PhP20,000.00 and 9 sacks of rice for winning the 2nd place, Tigaon received PhP30,000.00 and 9 sacks of rice for winning the 1st place, and Pasacao received PhP50,000.00 and 9 sacks of rice for being the champion. Under the agencies challenge, PNP received PhP30,000.00 and 9 sacks of rice for winning the 1st place, and BFP received PhP50,000.00 and 9 sacks of rice for being the champion. To widen the scope of the NDRM Celebration, the province also held the 1st Schools DRRM (SDRRM) Olympics participated by seven schools across CamSur. More than 70 students showcased their DRRM skills under challenges on bandaging relay, transfer relay, immobilization relay, and Basic Life Support. Judged by the PRC, participants demonstrated their ability to bandage and control bleeding, lift injured patients, and revive pulseless victims. “This activity gave us the chance to show that youth can also have an important role in rescuing other people’s lives. Through this, schools can prove that it can also become a tool in achieving a disaster-resilient province,” said Maria Crestina Suelo from the CBSUA - Pasacao. The Pasacao Central Bicol State University of Agriculture, declared as champion, won PhP15,000.00 and five sacks of rice. The Bicol State College of Applied Science and Technology won the 1st place and received PhP10,000.00 and five sacks of rice, and San Juan National High School won the 2nd place and received PhP5,000.00 and five sacks of rice. A consolation prize of PhP3,000.00 and five sacks of rice were also given to all participating schools. The National Disaster Resilience Month is observed every July to promote disaster resilience. Formerly called the Disaster Consciousness Month, this year’s celebration aims to convey a paradigm shift from a reactive to a proactive approach in increasing people’s resilience.