CEBU CITY, Philippines – With the aim to gather advocates of disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation (DRR-CCA) all over the country and exchange best practices and innovations, the 1st ever National Agos Summit on Disaster Preparedness was successfully held on July 7 to 8 at the Samsung Hall of the SM Aura Mall in Taguig City.
Hundreds of civic volunteers responded to the call to enhance their learning and understanding as emergency responders, frontliners and volunteers in helping those in need especially during disasters and emergencies.
Agos is a collaborative platform that combines top-down government action with bottom up civic engagement to help communities mitigate risks and deal with climate change and natural hazards. Using mobile and web technologies and social media, it ensures the flow of critical and actionable information to those who need it before, during, and after disasters and connects those who need help directly with those who can truly help.
Powered by the eBayanihan spirit, it mobilizes different sectors of society and transforms ordinary citizens into movers who are helping build a more resilient nation. Agos is also powered by Ateneo de Manila University's e-Bayanihan platform. It is supported by the Australian Government, the Office of Civil Defense, the Department of Education, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Philippine Disaster Resiliency Foundation, and other several partners.
Prior to the National Summit, at least 2 Project Agos Training-Workshops were successfully held in Cebu City on October 13 and November 23 both in 2016 respectively as initiated by Cebu MovePH Mover and Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CCDRRMC) Head Secretariat Greggy Senados.
The Cebu City Government headed by Mayor Tomas R. Osmeña through its CCDRRMC, in collaboration with Rappler’s MovePH hosted civic volunteers from the different backgrounds such as Barangay Disaster Brigades, Uniformed personnel from the Philippine Army, Philippine Navy, Cebu City Police Office, Disaster Volunteers and Responders from various socio and civic organizations, among others for the said two Agos workshops held in Cebu City.
The training-workshops provided the participants with an opportunity to learn about how to gather, understand, and share accurate and timely information that could help save lives and properties particularly using tools and apps available on the internet especially during disasters and emergencies.
The participants made a pledge to help others in their time of need and to use the Agos platform to crowdsource and share critical information. The volunteers are now certified Agos Emergency Responders and will continue their training to learn more advanced skills such as life-saving, leadership, and communications, among others.
During the 1st National Agos Summit on Disaster Preparedness, Senados together with two other Disaster Office staffs Connie Cuyos and Angelita Tumamak attended the activity.
The summit which was organized by Rappler’s civic engagement arm MovePH builds on the work of Agos, powered by eBayanihan, a disaster information management platform that amplifies and crowdsources critical information before, during, and after disasters. Together with its partner agencies, organizations, and volunteers, Agos enables disaster managers, local leaders, and responders to make quick life-saving decisions.
Prominent speakers include leaders of the agencies involved in climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction such as Secretary Vernice Victorio of the Climate Change Commission (CCC), Undersecretary Ricardo Jalad, executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), Albay 2nd District Representative Joey Salceda and Senator Loren Legarda, among several others.
The summit also tackled on how we can prepare for the so-called “Big One”, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake that could devastate Metro Manila. It focused on the preparations on Metro Manila Shake Drill scheduled on July 15 to 17.
A broad range of topics on the different phases of a disaster were also tackled during the summit together with the different partner organizations such as Oxfam, Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), UNICEF, the Ateneo de Manila University, and the Local Government of Pasig City.