Butuan City, Philippines – Department of Agriculture (DA) spearheads the Basic Incident Command System (ICS) Training to institutionalize the system in the region in cooperation with the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD).
Twenty-seven employees/responders from different divisions of the Department recently completed the three-day training course which prepares them for the various disasters and calamities that the region might face.
“Natural calamities can happen anytime, so it is just but proper for us to be prepared even in our respective offices.” said Mark Calang, Training Officer from OCD.
The activity headed by highly experienced facilitators focused on protocols when a disaster strikes an area. “Here we want to prepare you through the discussions and workshops to any calamities that may arise. We need trained responders who know what exactly to do.” said Amado Posas, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (NDRRM) Division Head.
Series of related topics were taught to the responders and were given practical activities on how a situation should be managed assuming the calamities that the region usually encounter. “Since most of the time we can’t predict the coming of a certain calamity, it is expedient that as responders we already have in our system the necessary actions that must be taken,” Posas said.
Disasters such as the destruction of a possible earthquake was used as one of the examples to the responders and were commanded to perform an actual proper response workshop from the planning of necessary actions to the deployment of the responders.
“Agriculture related disasters are also visible in the region. The destruction of wide-spreading pests, plant diseases, El Niño and La Niña casualties might be found anywhere at any time; but now we are glad that there are already trained DA responders in the region which we can cling to.” said Regional Director Manuel Luis Ochotorena of OCD.
DA intended to conduct such activity to equip its employees on the technical aspect of responding to a certain calamity in accordance to the protocols of the NDRRM. “Now that we are already trained responders, I believe that to any possible calamity that might happen we are ready to apply what we’ve learned.” said Gerlie Antipaso, Climate Change Focal Person. (Fretcher Magatao 02/19/2017, ruralevolution.net)