UNDP continues to support the Annual Caribbean Conference on Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM)

DECEMBER 2011, BRIDGETOWN – UNDP Sub-regional Office for Barbados and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) provided US$170,000 to support the recently concluded 6th Annual Comprehensive Disaster Management Conference (CDM) in Trinidad and Tobago, coordinated by the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA). Since 2006, the CDM Conference has united disaster management and other thematic experts to share best practices, research and ongoing projects to improve disaster risk management as a way to make Caribbean economies more resilient.

UNDP has supported the annual conference, from its inception.

At the conference, participants shared their experiences and programmes to decrease the likelihood of hazards such as hurricanes, floods and earthquakes escalating to disastrous proportions. It was an opportunity to learn from the small island states in the Pacific how they cope with natural and man-made events to prevent disasters. UNDP’s support to the CDM Conference was also an opportunity to continue to reiterate the importance of disaster risk reduction as a means of building economic and social resilience in the Caribbean and reducing environmental degradation.

Meteorological representatives from the 18 CDEMA Participating States attended this year’s conference, and were able to network with disaster management offices and strengthen their understanding of the role of the Met Offices within the disaster management cycle. UNDP made this participation possible through a project funded by the Government of Italy entitled “Enhancing Resilience to Reduce Vulnerability in the Caribbean (ERC)”. ERC is being implemented by the Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH) and UNDP Barbados and the OECS, in collaboration with CDEMA.

Participants from the British and Dutch Overseas Territories also shared best practices and innovation in disaster management. Their attendance was facilitated through another UNDP project, the Regional Risk Reduction Initiative (R3I), funded by the European Union. The R3I team took the opportunity to highlight the project’s achievements to date by screening their video entitled, “Building Resilience in the Caribbean: reducing hazard risks through capacity building and partnership” and conduct a demonstration of the CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) Early Warning System.

UNDP also sponsored three sessions of the conference which facilitated discussion on: The Evolving Role of Civil Society in Disaster Risk Management; The Changing Space for Applied Science, Education and United Nations House, Marine Gardens, Hastings, Christ Church, Barbados| Tel: (246) 467-6000 |

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