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Tuesday, April 12, 2022

SM On Women Empowerment: Role of Women in Disaster Resilience

SM Cares, together with the Women's International Network on Disaster Risk Reduction (WIN DRR) and the Private Sector Alliance for Disaster Resilient Societies-Philippines (ARISE-Philippines), conducted a webinar on the importance of women in disaster resilience in celebration of 2022 National Women's Month. 

"As we learn today from various women in resilience initiatives, may this spark in all of use the strength to overcome adversity and a renewed drive to create a sustainable future for us all," said SM Supermalls President Steven Tan. 

United Nations Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Disaster Risk Reduction, Mami Muzutori said, "Women's equal participation and leadership in public life including disaster risk reduction is important and it is also essential to reducing disaster risk in achieving the United Nations sustainable development goals."

Meanwhile, Vasiti Soko, Director of the National Disaster Management Organization in Fiji expressed the inclusivity in disaster risk reduction and empowerment of women in DRR programs of the Fijian government. Equitable access to services is Fiji's battle cry to alleviate cultural discrimination and enhance productivity to rebuild opportunities after disaster. 

Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco of Zamboanga City discussed how women can help build disaster-resilient cities. In Zamboanga City, promotion of women leadership in policy-making was demonstrated by appointing more women in executive positions. 

UN Women WeEmpowerAsia Philippines Country Program Manager Ma. Rosalyn Mesina talked about the ways to ensure gender equality in the promotion of DRR and resilience. Among these are having women's seat at the table, promoting women-led information dissemination, supporting sustainable women's livelihood and access to markets. 

Meanwhile, Citizens Disaster Response Network National Chairperson Jazmin Aguisanda-Jerusalem talked about women-led community-based disaster risk reduction and management especially her experience during Typhoon Haiyan while based in Palo, Leyte. The organization she leads was able to mobilize the community three days after the typhoon and helped in the relief operations for thousands of households. 

For Branwen Millar, Program Manager for WIN DRR, she reminded the participants of the strategic goal of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030. She emphasized that women and their participation are critical to effectively managing disaster risk and in designing, resourcing and implementing gender-sensitive disaster risk reduction policies, plans and programs. 

She also mentioned that UNDRR encapsulates the aspiration to lead through the establishment of the WIN DRR with the goal of empowering women to attain leadership and enhance their role in decision-making in disaster risk reduction in the Asia Pacific Region. 


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