Two partnerships forged for disaster-resilient cities
Immediately prior to its General Meeting, the National Resilience Council (NRC) held a signing ceremony for its Adopt-A-City program last August 29, 2019 at the Tower Club in Makati.
The Adopt-A-City program is a city-specific partnership model launched by NRC last June 17, that aims to strengthen the leadership and governance capacities of local government units (LGUs) to achieve human, economic, infrastructure, and environmental resilience through a more robust private sector participation.
During the recently held signing ceremony, the first Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was inked by the City of Iloilo’s Mayor Jerry Trenas, Alliance Global Group Inc.’s Chief Executive Officer and Vice Chairman Kevin Andrew Tan, NRC President’s Antonia Yulo Loyzaga, and NRC’s Convenor Ambassador Roberto R. Romulo. The second MOU was signed by Naga City Mayor Nelson Legacion, SM Prime Holdings’ Director Hans T. Sy and, again, by Ms. Antonia Yulo Loyzaga and Amb. Roberto R. Romulo. Next to Cagayan De Oro, Naga is the second city that SM has already adopted.
The NRC is responsible for linking the resources of partners, i.e. scientific knowledge, technology, funding, services, equipment and logistics to the specific strategic needs of the LGUs in establishing their resilient LGU systems. It will be a collective action of private sector, LGU and other partners towards decreasing exposure and vulnerability and increasing resilience.
How the National Resilience Council came to be
According to MOODY’s Investors Service, the Philippines is one of 20 countries deemed most vulnerable to the impact of natural disasters and climate change, while it ranks third in World Risk Index.
Alarmed and prompted by these grim statistics, NRC was launched on November 2017 as a science and technology-based Public-Private Partnership (PPP) pursuing a disaster and climate resilient Philippines.
NRC’s efforts and initiatives are aligned with the four priority areas of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, namely: Understanding Disaster Risk; Strengthening Disaster Risk Governance; Investing in Disaster Risk Reduction for Resilience; and Enhancing Disaster Preparedness for Effective Response and to “Build Back Better” in Recovery, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction. The Council likewise promotes the advancement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Paris Agreement, and the New Urban Agenda.
The Team behind NRC
The NRC Executive Committee is made up of indefatigable men and women of unquestionable dedication to the Council’s objectives: Amb. Roberto R. Romulo as the Convenor, Mr. Hans Sy as the Co-Chair for Private Sector, National Defense Sec. Delfin N. Lorenzana as the Co-Chair for Government, Ms. Ma. Antonia Yulo Loyzaga as the President, Mr. Edgar O. Chua as the Vice Chair for Private Sector, Usec. Marivel C. Sacendoncillo as the Vice Chair for Government, Fr. Jose Ramon T. Villarin as the Vice Chair for Scientific Organizations and Academe, Prof. Ernesto D. Garilao as the Vice Chair for Civil Society and Non-Government Organizations, Ms. Marilou G. Erni as the Executive Director, and Ms. Marilou B. Suplido as the Senior Program Manager.
Due to the immensity of the challenges that need to be addressed, NRC is working with the following partners that believe in the importance and urgency of their mission: Local Government Units (Bataan, Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo, Iriga, Muntinlupa, Naga, Ormoc, Valenzuela, and Zamboanga); Congresswoman Loren Legarda as their Legislative Partner; Implementing Partners (Manila Observatory, Zuellig Family Foundation, DILG, Office of Civil Defense, and PriceWaterhouseCoopers); Funding Partners (SM Prime, San Miguel Corp., and Carlos P. Romulo Foundation); National Government (Climate Change Commission, DENR, Dep’t. of Finance, Dep’t. of Foreign Affairs, DILG, Dep’t. of National Defense, DPWH, DOST, DSWD, DTI, NDRRMC, NEDA, National Security Council, and Office of Civil Defense); Business Sector (ARISE Phils., Business Continuity Managers Association of the Phils., Makati Business Club, National Competitiveness Council, Phil. Business for Social Progress, Phil. Disaster Resilience Foundation, Phil. Institute of Civil Engineers, Phil. Insurers & Reinsurers Association, and PriceWaterhouseCoopers); Scientific Community and Academe (Ateneo de Manila University, Ateneo de Naga University, Ateneo de Zamboanga University, Bataan Peninsula State University, De La Salle Phils., Manila Observatory, National Academy of Science and Technology, UP Visayas, Visayas State University, and Xavier University); and Civil Society Organizations & Non-Government Organizations (Build Change, Christian Aid, Carlos P. Romulo Foundation, SM Foundation, and Zuellig Family Foundation).
Through this partnership, SM continues to join the effort in making the Philippines more disaster-resilient. Hans Sy, who also heads the UNISDR Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies (ARISE)-Philippines, said that, in so doing, “we save lives and properties, help our economy, and build our nation.”
“No effort is too big or too small, too early or too late. Everybody’s contribution is important, and this initiative will only succeed if everybody does his share. If we don’t get together and try to mitigate these environmental issues, we’ll have very serious problems,” he concluded.
If you wish to join and be part of this campaign, you may visit the National Resilience Council website at www.resiliencecouncil.ph for more info. Or if you want to know more about ARISE Philippines, you may contact its secretariat via email at [email protected]
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