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Disaster readiness and risk reduction management of Salvacion National High School

By Sheila A. Benosa

With the advent of the climate change, students and teachers must now be equipped with knowledge on mitigating and managing hazards and risks brought by natural disasters like earthquakes, typhoons and flooding. Thus, the department of Education (DEPED) are stressing the need to incorporate disaster risk reduction and management in the curriculum under Section 14 of Republic Act 10121 or the “Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010” which requires the DepEd as well as the Commission on Higher Education and Technical Skills and Authority to integrate disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) in the school curriculum. The topics about disasters from basic information to disaster management must be incorporated into the curricula of the elementary and senior high school students where in elementary and junior high school, DRRM education is not a school subject itself but a component of subjects like science and technology and social science.

DRRM education must also be re-informed with programs and projects implement by non - government agencies and local government units, likes orientation and training on disaster mitigation and preparedness, distribution of DRRM manuals to students and school faculty members and the conduct of quarterly hazards drills. Republic Act 10121 also mandates local DRRM bodies to “encourage community, specifically the youth, participation in the disaster risk reduction and management activities, such as organizing quick response groups, particularly in identified disaster - prone areas, as well as the inclusion of disaster risk reduction and management programs as part of youth programs and projects”. The most important facet of DRRM education is that students should have knowledge on what to do during certain disasters like earthquakes to save their lives and those of others. (Rayandayan, 2020).

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), formerly known as the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDDC), is a working group of various government, non-government, civil sector and private sector organization of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines established by Republic Act 10121 of 2010. It is administered by the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) under the Department of National Defense (DND). The council is responsible for ensuring the protection and welfare of the people during disasters or emergencies. The NDRRMC plans and leads the guiding activities in the field of communication, warning signals, emergency, transportation, evacuation, rescue, engineering, health and rehabilitation, public education and the police in the country. (NDRRMC, 2010) The enactment of republic act 10121 otherwise known as the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 has laid the basis for paradigm shift from just disaster preparedness and response to disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM). The National DRRM Plan serves as the national guide on how sustainable development can be achieved to inclusive growth while building the adaptive capacities of communities; increasing the resilience of vulnerable sectors; and optimizing disaster mitigation opportunities with the end in view of promoting people’s welfare security towards gender-responsive and rights-based sustainable development (DILG, 2011).

Camarines Sur Risk Reduction and Management said the responsibility that comes along with the recognition being the best DRRM Council in the region has pushed them to even improve more and to never stop learning. “Every year we have to learn and innovate programs and projects and activities related to DRRM.” Around P37 million have been proposed by the office for their priority projects of sustaining and improving different disaster preparedness projects. Punzalan also expressed optimism that the PDRRMO and the entire Local Government of Camarines Sur could already process the documentation for accreditation to the international Standards Organization (Communication Service, 2017).

The topography of Salvacion National High School is considered by the Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management of Camarines Sur as a flash flood and landslide prone area especially during heavy rains and recently suffered earthquake and peace and order incidents. The Fault Line runs and the community experienced earthquake if the Fault Line generate/moved and it causing more devastation in the region. Last 2018, the school experienced earthquake as the fault line move. Then the teachers and the learners apply the drill especially the dock, cover and hold. Afterward the School DRRM Coordinator checked the school premises if there were damages on the school buildings.

Approximately 10 to 15 times of floods were experienced by the community in a year according from the Barangay record. Assistance from the Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Team is delayed most of the time when natural and man-made calamities happen because of the accessibility of the area.

The “A.L.E.R.T” program of Salvacion National High School will be created for the purpose of spreading awareness and preparedness about DRRM among learners, the community and its stakeholders. The School Quick Response Team compose of Grade 11 students of Salvacion National High School will be trained to response immediately before, during and after disaster happens in the absence of rescuers from DRRM. In the implementation of the said program, it is also necessary to educate learners in terms of awareness and preparedness through integrating it in the science subjects based on the competencies. To level up the implementation of this program, the action plan will be made to re-calibrate the awareness, preparedness and develop the resiliency skills of other learners, teachers and the community of Salvacion National High School.


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