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United States Agency for International Development, MEDA-Pakistan organise Knowledge Sharing conference

Islamabad, November 15, 2012 (PPI-OT): USAID Entrepreneurship Project in collaboration with MEDA-Pakistan organized a Knowledge Sharing Conference at Serena Hotel. The propose of the conference was to gather all stakeholders on a single platform to share the knowledge of disaster resilience and disaster risk mitigation projects.

Kathrine Moore, Deputy Mission Director – USAID was the Guest of Honour and Chairman National Disaster Management Authority Dr Zafar Iqbal Qadir was the Chief Guest.

In the welcome note Agnes Luz, Chief of Party – USAID Entrepreneur Project, said that it is a great honour for USAID to gather different parties to the USAID Entrepreneurship Project’s platform.

The project focuses on entrepreneurship in the needy and backward areas, she said.

USAIDEP has been able to work tirelessly in war-torn area of Malakand, she said, and been able to rewire the economy and life in the region. USAIDEP focuses on those areas that have potential threat of militancy.

In her address, Kathrine Moore said that USAID has assisted the Government of Pakistan and its disaster management bodies in coping with the natural disasters.

The assistance and the collaboration has not gone in veil as now there are many projects in action and many other in the works that will potentially reduce disaster risk in the years to come.

She noted that this effort could not have been possible without the collaboration from local community who has been extremely helpful in the cause.

She said that around 75,000 people dwell in the disaster-prone areas and DRM is a continuous job.

Women empowerment is one of the most important projects of USAID Entrepreneur Project, she told.

Chairman NDMA Dr Zafar Qadir said that NDMA has been able to control the disaster risk to the highest level possible.

He noted the work done by USAIDEP in the Malakand division and the efforts made in women empowerment in these areas. He stated some of the projects by USAIDEP as testaments like value chain, dairy value chain, medicinal plants value chain, dairy, dairy, honey, artisan and conflict management.

He said that knowledge sharing is one of the foremost priorities for the NDMA at this point. This is one of the platforms that boast such activities.

He said that over the years Government of Pakistan has taken important steps toward mitigating natural disaster risks. Earthquake Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Authority (ERRA) was created soon after the 2005 earthquake. NDMA followed the suit shortly afterwards.

NDMA, in collaboration with GOP and provincial governments, was able to ensure the swift working on DRM by introducing Provincial Disaster Risk Management Authorities, in respective provinces.

Now NDMA has taken the reach to grass root level by creating District Disaster Management Authorities.

Azad Jamu and Kashmir and Khyber Pakhtoonkhwa have been able to cater to the disasters by themselves this year, especially KPK was all aces this year in coping with the disaster affects.

The Chairman said that NDMA is working on first of its kind project in ensuring the human and financial assets in the disaster-prone areas. Soon Disaster Risk Insurance will be announced to insure the financial and human assets in these areas.

This will potentially transfer some of the responsibilities to the professional bodies in ensuring the health and safety of the inhabitants of the prone areas.

Over the last two years, he said, NDMA has been able to manage the disaster risk and strengthen supply chains and distribution channels to such an extent that the NDMA paradigm is now shifting to Disaster Risk Reduction policies.

It plans to bring DRR into mainstream alongside other important projects. It has also done effective work in ensuring women empowerment. It has a Gender and Child Control division in place.

In this regard, NDMA has introduced a policy that all the shelters allotted to affected population will be owned by women, the most important cog in running the domestic machine.

NDMA has also launched Awareness campaigns and is working day in day out to mobilize the communities.

He appreciated USAID’s efforts and collaboration with NDMA and said that strengthened Pakistan, resilient Pakistan means strengthened global community.

He thanked all the participants, press and the beneficiaries for their presence at the event.

For more information, contact:
Ahmed Kamal
Spokesperson
National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA)
Tel: +9251 9215412
Cell: +92300 5278981 and +92331-5657779
Email: maf@ndma.gov.pk

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