21 August 2020 | Vientiane, LAO PDR

Participants identifying priority actions to strengthen multi-sector cooperation on disaster preparedness and response.

Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) experiences a range of hazards like droughts, flooding and storms that affect lives and livelihoods and challenge the country’s development aspirations.

The Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare (MoLSW) is formulating a new five-year National Strategic Disaster Risk Management Plan which provides an excellent opportunity to promote engagement across various sectors of government and other stakeholders at national, sub-national and local levels.

Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) jointly organized a ‘Co-Creation and Planning Workshop for Strengthening Multi-Stakeholder Cooperation for Disaster Preparedness and Response in Lao PDR’ with the Department of Social Welfare, Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare (DSW/MoLSW).

The co-creation meeting was a first of its kind in the country which enabled government, non-profit associations (NPAs) and the private sector to discuss the overall strategic direction of the country’s disaster preparedness and response and identify priority actions for multi-sector cooperation.

Mr. Vilayphong Sisomvang, Director General of DSW/MoLSW sharing his opening remarks.

Mr. Vilayphong Sisomvang, Director General of DSW/MoLSW shared his opening remarks and encouraged all participants to discuss gaps and challenges, share lessons and experiences on effectively coordinating disaster risk management activities at local levels.

Mr. Sisomvang also identified that representatives tuning in from Cambodia, Myanmar and the Philippines will be sharing country experiences as part of ADPC’s Asian Preparedness Partnership (APP) program and allow participants to learn from fellow countries in Southeast Asia.

Mr. Hans Guttman sharing his opening remarks.

Mr. Hans Guttman, Executive Director of ADPC, noted that ADPC has been coordinating with Lao PDR on disaster preparedness and response for about two decades and will continue to strengthen coordination between key actors at national and local levels while providing opportunities for learning and experience sharing at the regional level.

Mr. Guttman also invited workshop participants to share their recommendations on developing a APP-style partnership that brings together multiple stakeholders in Lao PDR to advance the localization of disaster preparedness and emergency response.

APP representatives from Cambodia, Myanmar and the Philippines sharing best practices and lessons learned with Lao PDR participants.

Mr. Sovann Sam, Executive Director of Cambodia Humanitarian Forum (CHF), Cambodia, Mr. Ngwe Thein, Executive Director, Capacity Building Initiative (CBI), Myanmar and Ms. Veronica Gabaldon, Executive Director, Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), Philippines provided insights from their respective country and sector specific experiences.

Drawing on this sharing from other contexts, the workshop participants in Lao PDR were able to discuss key gaps, challenges and opportunities as well as priority areas across the key themes of multi-stakeholder coordination & partnership, capacity development and knowledge management & learning exchange in Lao PDR.

The key findings will assist in clarifying and identifying the way forward and next steps in the short, medium and longer term for strengthening multi-stakeholder cooperation for disaster preparedness and response in the country.

Workshop participants and ADPC posing for a group photo.

Participants included representatives from the Lao Government, Lao Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), private sector, civil society organizations-CSOs/Non-Profit Associations-NPAs and selected development partners, and ADPC staff.

ADPC’s APP program provides a multi-stakeholder platform of government, the private sector and civil society networks, with a view to supporting the localization of disaster preparedness and emergency response actions through multi-stakeholder engagement and partnerships in selected countries in Asia; namely Cambodia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines and Sri Lanka.

The APP program is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and United States Agency for International Development Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (USAID/BHA).

Source: http://www.adpc.net/igo/contents/Media/media-news.asp?pid=1604#sthash.HDSA1XFr.vWk90x2l.dpbs