Disaster Preparedness ‘A Daily Thing’


Natural disasters are common phenomenon these days and people need to be prepared well, on a daily basis, for it.

This message reverberated overwhelmingly amongst community leaders and organizational heads in Taveuni and the greater Northern division during the national awareness exercise on disaster and emergencies.

A week after Fiji Day celebrations, Taveuni drew in disaster experts, emergency specialist, stakeholders and service providers from both public and private sectors and civil society agencies in the view of raising awareness under the theme of #BuildtoLast.

As such the garden island of Fiji played host to a series of trainings and simulation exercises on tsunamis in light of disaster/ emergencies preparedness for the 20192020 season.

 The National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) in partnership with the Communicating with Disaster Affected Communities (CDAC) Network is working together to build stronger units in the Government arm of operations.

Two trainings were also convened which ran simultaneous with over 40 head of departments from the Northern Division in one and about 50 tikina representatives from villages in Taveuni in another, all in the view of raising awareness about disaster/emergencies.

The trainings enhance the knowledge and capacity of heads of departments and village/tikinas on how well they can engage with the communities on the ground during or after any cyclone.

The objectives of this workshop is to improve coordination with key stakeholders, understand priorities, needs and challenges and explore how the national Communication and Community Engagement (CCE)
Working Group will support the needs in the Northern Division.

Acting director NDMO, Litiana Bainimarama highlighted the importance of being able to communicate well in order to respond “whether it’s peace times or emergencies”.

“To have more impactful services and ensuring specific community needs are met, community engagement is paramount,” Ms Bainimarama said.

“Aligning to the international commitments including the World Humanitarian Summit and Grand Bargain, Fiji’s National Humanitarian Policy for Disaster Risk Management also highlights the importance of establishing National Information management and communications with emphasis on building community networks and promoting localization,” she added.

The NDMO had conducted awareness around Taveuni ahead of the National Disaster Awareness Week.