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(July 2, 2012) The City Government of Tacurong conducted a kick-off ceremony for the National Disaster Consciousness Month on July 2, 2012. Executive Order 137 of 1999 declares July as National Disaster Consciousness Month to increase Filipinos’ awareness on natural and man-made disasters.
The government gives due attention to disaster prevention and mitigation by conducting information and education campaigns, especially in disaster-prone communities. Tacurong City had already conducted seminars for the said purpose. One of the most recent activities was a two-day Roll-out training on barangay disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM), and climate change adaptation. The training was participated in by 132 barangay officials and school administrators.
According to DILG City Director Alberto P. Sero Jr., the government had also devised other mechanisms to increase awareness. “Maari na rin nating magamit ang Internet upang lalo tayong maging handa. Ang DOST at PAG-ASA ay naglunsad ng Project NOAH kung saan maari nating makita ang lagay ng panahon sa lahat ng dako ng bansa,” Director Sero said. Project NOAH or Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards (noah.dost.gov.ph) allows one to view live satellite images of cities and towns including flood maps, status of weather stations, stream and rain gauges, and rain probability through different Doppler stations.
During the ceremony, Mayor Montilla stressed that Tacurong continues to strive for higher excellence in disaster risk reduction and management. DILG XII had already endorsed the City to receive the Seal of Good Housekeeping for Disaster Preparedness. To add, the Tacurong City Responsive Assistance and Coordinated Emergency Search and Rescue (TRACER) had been selected as national contender for Gawad KALASAG 2012-Government Emergency Response Management-Basic Search and Rescue Category. “Dapat natin ipagpatuloy ang maganda nating nasimulan. Patunayan natin na tayo ay karapat-dapat sa mga parangal na iginagawad sa atin,” Mayor Montilla stated.
The ceremony also included a prayer for calamity victims and releasing of balloons symbolizing four key areas of DRRM: disaster prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response, and rehabilitation and recovery.