Relief agency taps Smart to boost disaster preparedness in Iloilo
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.
Residents of three barangays in Toledo City receive free medical and dental services from AboitizPower.
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).