Re­lief agency taps Smart to boost dis­as­ter pre­pared­ness in Iloilo

Cebu Daily News - - COMMUNITY - /PR

THE Ad­ven­tist De­vel­op­ment and Re­lief Agency (Adra) and Smart Com­mu­ni­ca­tions have col­lab­o­rated to make Iloilo mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties bet­ter pre­pared for calami­ties.

Through a web-based short mes­sage ser­vice (SMS) ad­vi­sory plat­form called In­fo­cast, Smart and Adra will en­able the mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties of Ajuy, Es­tan­cia and Con­cep­cion to send news broad­casts, weather bul­letins and other crit­i­cal in­for­ma­tion via SMS alerts.

De­vel­oped by Smart, In­fo­cast is an ef­fec­tive emer­gency com­mu­ni­ca­tions so­lu­tion­whichal­low­sthe­send­ing of alerts via text mes­sage for free and en­ables reg­is­tered sub­scribers to con­nect with other In­fo­cast mem­bers through text broad­casts us­ing a com­mon, unique ac­cess code. Cru­cial in­for­ma­tion can be sent to all In­fo­cast sub­scribers, in­clud­ing the mu­nic­i­pal­ity’s and barangay’s dis­as­ter risk re­duc­tion and man­age­ment teams.

At the re­cent turnover cer­e­mony in Iloilo City, Smart Se­nior Man­ager Nova Con­cep­cion said, “Smart In­fo­cast has been of great ser­vice to the LGUs and gov­ern­ment agen­cies that use it. Through this part­ner­ship with Adra, we hope to help the Yolan­daaf­fected res­i­dents of Iloilo not only in pre­par­ing for dis­as­ters but also in rebuilding their lives.”

Fol­low­ing the on­slaught of su­per typhoon Yolanda in 2013, Adra, the global hu­man­i­tar­ian or­ga­ni­za­tion of the Sev­enth-day Ad­ven­tist Church, has been help­ing im­prove the eco­nomic well-be­ing of res­i­dents in Ajuy, Es­tan­cia and Con­cep­cion by ad­dress­ing causes of vul­ner­a­bil­ity and ex­clu­sion through their Restor­ing, Em­pow­er­ing and Pro­tect­ing Liveli­hoods (Reap) project.

Reap, Adra’s project with fel­low Cana­dian church World Re­new, aims to pro­vide Yolan­daaf­fected res­i­dents with resources to re­store and strengthen liveli­hood lost dur­ing the su­per typhoon, as well as de­velop al­ter­na­tive sources of in­come to re­duce pressure on fish­ing and farm­ing resources.

“The tar­get ben­e­fi­cia­ries are mostly fish­er­folk, farmers and women — the poor­est sec­tors in the Philip­pines and hard­est hit by typhoon Yolanda,” said Thomas Pignon, Adra di­rec­tor in the Philip­pines.

More than 48,000 res­i­dents from farm­ing and fish­ing house­holds in the three mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties are ex­pected to ben­e­fit from the ini­tia­tive, Pignon added.

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

Res­i­dents of three barangays in Toledo City re­ceive free med­i­cal and den­tal ser­vices from AboitizPower.

CON­TRIB­UTED PHOTO

Iloilo of­fi­cials and rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Smart Com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Ad­ven­tist De­vel­op­ment and Re­lief Agency, and World Re­new pose for photos dur­ing the sign­ing of agree­ment for the turnover of Smart In­fo­cast in Iloilo. In photo are (fifth from left) Es­tan­cia Mayor Rene Cordero, World Re­new project man­ager Jeff Cosico, Adra Philip­pines di­rec­tor Tom Pignon and Smart com­mu­nity part­ner­ships Se­nior Man­ager Nova Con­cep­cion (fourth from right).

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