The Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM) strategy and programme framework seeks to achieve the overarching goal of sustainable development in the Caribbean.
This is detailed in the CDM framework for 2007 – 2012.
The report states that sustainable development within the Caribbean is intricately tied to “building the resilience of nations and communities to disasters.”
The programme also seeks to address the global emphasis and regional recognition of the need to strengthen communities, to cope with the multiple hazards “which seem to be increasing in scope, frequency and severity, and in turn impacting on the many aspects of community vulnerabilities.”
The document also states that the enhanced CDM Framework marks the beginning of a deepened approach to disaster loss reduction through comprehensive disaster management.
The framework, it added, which proposes four priority outcomes, is based on three underpinning pillars — the review and assessment of the 2001 CDM Strategy and Framework; the global and regional disaster management agenda, including the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015; and the CARICOM Regional Programming Framework.
According to the document, there is need for a strategic shift towards a programming framework that will foster collaboration among development partners and other key players. It will also foster harmonization among the many projects, programmes and initiatives in Disaster Risk Management (DRM) within the region.
This newspaper understands that national disaster management policies are needed in all countries, with the exception of the British Virgin Islands and St Lucia, and prioritisation at the highest level within each state is an essential step.
The programme addresses the overarching concern that strong institutions are the pivot of a successful DRM in the Caribbean, and that there remains much to be accomplished in that area, especially at the national level.
Another aspect seeks to harmonise the many initiatives underway by, among other aspects, strengthening knowledge management and sharing, as well as utilisation of key data, while also emphasizing the need to enhance existing and proposed education, training and research programs through a network of centres of excellence and incorporating of continuing education programs.
It also addresses the issue of mainstreaming disaster risk management with particular emphasis on key sectors of regional economies and the need for risk identification, reduction and transfer measures at the national as well as regional levels.
“The enhanced framework is perceived as “rebranding” and “revisioning,” and in that regard a monitoring mechanism is to be tied to the process as part of the programme development.”
The document stipulates that a plan of action and more detailed roadmap need to be formulated to facilitate moving forward for endorsement by external partners, and for endorsement by the Caribbean Disaster and Emergency Response Agency (CDERA) system.
“Development partners have undertaken to assess how the respective agencies can contribute to support the CDM process. Roles will need to be defined and institutional capacity for implementing/supporting CDM within the respective agencies assessed.”
In addition, a mechanism for detailed design and implementation for the enhanced program is essential, and the requisite support should be obtained.
Also, consideration needs to be given to development of a detailed baseline and benchmarking, to strengthen program design and facilitate harmonization among key donors and institutions, given the imperative for integration of a results-based programmatic focus into this enhanced framework.
Indeed, it stated, a more detailed baseline study and benchmarking needs to be undertaken as a precursor to drafting national CDM strategies.
“Some institutional assessments have taken place, and these can be expanded and/or incorporated as appropriate. The roles of lead and partner agencies as suggested in the outcomes table need to be further discussed and refined, so as to elaborate the programming inputs.”
According to the document, a highly consultative process should be undertaken for development of the programme in this context.
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