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Jul 25, 2018

Specialised Training for NEMO

The National Emergency Management Organization, in partnership with the United Nations’ Emergency Task Team in Belize, is conducting a three-day training on a number of aspects in Disaster Risk Reduction and Emergency Management. It looks at the basics of gender equality in the context of Disaster Risk Reduction, Climate Change Adaption in the execution of emergency management duties for the vulnerable in times of disaster. News Five’s Andrea Polanco found out how the training will help to improve service during times of emergencies. News Five’s Andrea Polanco reports.


Andrea Polanco, Reporting

Emergency officials are in a three day workshop to learn how to offer specialized service during times of an emergency. For instance, often times, evacuees are placed in shelters – but those evacuees’ needs may differ from each other – and shelters may not be equipped to meet those needs.


Colin Gillett

Colin Gillett, Deputy National Emergency Coordinator, NEMO

“NEMO has always treated everyone as a whole. We are now trying to get to the point where we can look at the specific needs of different groups, like the elderly and people who are handicapped – they need special care. So, now, with this kind of training, if there is every an emergency in shelters, we will know how to best treat them, how to deal with them on that particular level. In an emergency, people rush off and then they forget things. They don’t have enough pampers; they don’t have enough milk for their children. Some of the shelters we have to go to make them wheelchair accessible. There is always how do we move people from one place to the next who can’t move themselves – people who are bedridden and that kind of thing. So, those are kind of the considerations we are taking in through this workshop to see the steps we can put in place to make that easier.”


This training is being done in conjunction with United Nations Emergency Task Team. During the workshop UNETT will assist to build capacity in a number of areas including gender. UNICEF Country Rep Susan Kasedde shares how the topic of gender was covered when planning for emergencies.


Susan Kasedde

Dr. Susan Kasedde, Country Rep, UNICEF

“The first and most important step that we talked about for us to integrate in our work is for us to understand the way that people identify. And based on that understanding, inquiring further to understand what then they would need in  the way of information, services and support to stay safe and to have their needs met in emergency. That is true regardless of how you identify. And so by coming away with that appreciation, the team is therefore going to be more sensitive to the need to ask and inquire and to actively find out how do different people identify and what does that mean in terms of the risks they may face and therefore the support that they may need. It may be different for a male, it may be different for a female and it may be different for a person who doesn’t identify as either; whether in terms of reproductive health support needs or whether in terms of psychosocial support needs or access to various services. So, we definitely talked about it as the first step, not specific to any one population but as a first step to help us lead into more helpful planning and preparing for supporting people regardless of their gender.”


The Ministry of Local Government is also participating in the workshop. Acting Director Clifford King shares how the Ministry supports the municipalities for emergency readiness.


Clifford King

Clifford King, Acting Director of Local Government, Ministry of Local Government

“We have been working very closely with UNICEF over the last five years or so, in particular it has to do with the implementation of the sustainable and child friendly municipality initiative. And now recently, in collaboration with NEMO, we recognize that there is a need for more training and capacity building in terms of emergency management and our response as a nation to disaster and the issues surrounding disaster risk management and risk reduction.”


Reporting for News Five, I’m Andrea Polanco.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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