A community of entrepreneurs from the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), gathered together at the Villa Caceres Hotel here for the 3-day Business Community Planning (BCP) and Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (DRRM) training seminar primarily to mainstream business community and resiliency of local enterprises.

The activity, which started November 28 and capped its final program yesterday, November 30, endeavors to create a more resilient business community, more adaptive to the call of the changing times and enjoin individuals ready to extend its helping arm to the needy most especially during the most vulnerable situations.

Maricris Biñas, Asia Pacific Alliance for Disaster Management-Philippines (A-PAD Philippines) regional coordinator in Bicol stated that the confab was primarily conducted in cognizant of the great role that Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) play in the development of community disaster resilience.

“A-PAD Philippines conducted this training to enhance awareness and instill the importance of BCP and DRRM among selected MSMEs and other stakeholders. During the course of the confab, we have recognized some concerns, like the need to map existing MSMEs, strengthen public and private partnership and the inclusion of BCPs in local disaster risk reduction and management plans,” Biñas added.

Metro Naga Development Council Project Officer Totoy Badiola said that disaster preparedness will only get an optimum result once shared with other collaborators, especially with the intervention of the local government units, including public organizations and the private sector.

The LGUs need the cooperation and support of the private sector in implementing a comprehensive DRRM plan.  Multi-stakeholder collaboration is how A-PAD Philippines operates.

More than 40 participants representing various cooperatives and stakeholders coming from the food and agriculture sectors took part in the said confab. They were tasked to come up or formulate with their own business continuity strategies, aligning the real scenario in their respective business concerns.

Metro Naga Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MNCCI) president Gilbert Albero emphasized the importance of the training to the micro and small local enterprises, particularly in ensuring that the operation of their respective business will not be hampered by the onslaught of any disaster.

Preparedness always plays the key role in ensuring that our respective businesses will not suffer the brunt of a disaster. We have to be resilient so that we can also help others who are in need.

The 3-day confab was organized by the Citizen’s Disaster Response Center Foundation, Inc. (CDRC) in collaboration with Tarabang para sa Bicol, Inc., MNCCI. Kapisasan ng mga Brodkaster nf Piipinas-Camarines Sur, Central Bicol State University of Agriculture (CBSUA), MNDC, Mariners Polytechnic Colleges (MPC), Naga City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office and the Philippine Information Agency (PIA) – Camarines Sur Provincial Office. (LSM-PIA5/Camarines Sur)