PDRF, partners launch new digital tools to help MSMEs prepare for disasters

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PDRF, through the Philippine Preparedness Partnership (PhilPrep), launched two new digital tools to help small businesses prepare for disasters and build their resilience.

The Disaster Risk and Disaster Preparedness Needs Assessment Tool and the Business Continuity Capability Assessment Tool are practical checklists for micro-, small, and medium enterprises (MSME) owners to help them determine their readiness for different kinds of disruptions and to measure the effectiveness of having a business continuity plan (BCP).

PDRF developed these tools as part of the Asian Preparedness Partnership (APP) Philprep, the localized tripartite platform represented by the key societal actors from the government (Office of Civil Defense), the private sector (PDRF), and the civil society (Center for Disaster Preparedness). APP PhilPrep is supported by the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

The launch is also part of the celebration of MSME Day to recognize the importance of MSMEs to the global economy and in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. This year’s theme is resilience and rebuilding, supporting MSMEs as they navigate the impacts of the triple crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic, conflicts, and climate crisis.

“As we celebrate MSME Day this 27th of June, ADPC joins the whole world in recognizing the invaluable contribution of MSMEs to sustainable development and the global economy. These tools and guidelines, developed with support from the Asian Preparedness Partnership, can help MSMEs further strengthen their resilience to better prepare for, respond to, and recover from the impacts of disasters,” said Edwin Salonga, ADPC Country Program Manager.

MSMEs account for more than 99% of registered businesses in the Philippines and 67% of the workforce. They are the backbone of the economy and are also among the hardest-hit by disasters. Given their significant contributions, they play a crucial role in building back stronger.

“MSMEs provide a livelihood for many of our fellow Filipinos. We need to help them recover from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said PDRF President Butch Meily.

MSME owners can use the Disaster Risk and Disaster Preparedness Needs Assessment Tool to gauge their vulnerability to disaster risks and ascertain their own needs in terms of knowledge, skills, and resources to avoid, reduce, or mitigate the impacts of disasters in their businesses. This checklist was developed from research conducted by the Social Development Research Center of De La Salle University-Manila based on interviews with business owners from around the country.

The Business Continuity Capability and Readiness Assessment Checklist will enable key actors in MSME resilience to assess and evaluate the quality of BCPs produced and the impact of programs and technical assistance provided. This tool will also help MSME resilience program enablers evaluate the capacity of MSMEs from preparedness to recovery.

Both tools are now available on PDRF’s digital learning platform, iADAPT, and may be accessed by the general public. For more information, sign up for free at: https://iadapt.pdrf.org/

PDRF has been a staunch supporter of MSME resilience since before the pandemic. For more information on the other tools and programs developed to support MSMEs, visit here: https://covid19.pdrf.org/msme-resilience/