International Day for Disaster Reduction 2011 (IDDR DAY)
On 13 October 2011, the International Day for Disaster Reduction 2011 was celebrated worldwide with the slogan “Step up for DRR building the partnership with YOUTHS and CHILDREN”. To remarked this day, National Symposium on Importance of Participation of Youth And Children in DRR in Nepal, Painting on 6 ft Canvas and Balloon Flying program was organized in Kathmandu by DPNet-Nepal (Disaster Preparedness Network Nepal) in collaboration with governmental and non governmental organizations.
The objectives of the observation of IDDR day were to increase public awareness to understand disaster risk reduction locally and nationally, to ensure that the major donors and government recognize the importance of youths and child centered DRR framework, to develop coordination and collaboration mechanism in disaster risk reduction with new spectrum and to obtain a commitment to institutionalization of DRR in Nepal throughout the country and sector wide approaches for wider participation. More than 100 people participated in these event.
The chief guest Mr. Shusil JB Rana, Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs inaugurated the National Symposium which was held at United World Trade Center, Kathmandu. The symposium was focused on the present gaps and way forward regarding the DRR local as well as national strategies, acts and policies regarding children and youth. “Nepal has come up with some progress on these aspects however there are lots of gaps especially in public sensitization. Youth are normally kept in the front side in terms of encouraging them but their issues are normally kept backsides in decision making.” said Mr. Rana. “The policy and acts have been drafted and put forwarded to the approval process and committed that the acts will come soon if there is political settlement at national level”, added Mr. Rana.
Similarly, the Joint Secretary of MOHA highlighted progress made during this two years interval, that the National Strategy has been made in 2009; National Emergency Operation Centre has been established. District level disaster preparedness plan has been made in 60 districts. “Children and women are more vulnerable in terms of disaster thus the disaster preparedness activities should be focused to the vulnerable groups.” said Dr. Will Parks, National Representative of UNICEF. Mr. Meen Bahadur Chhettri, Chairperson of DPNet-Nepal emphasized on the need and importance of youths and child centered DRR practices in Nepal.
The floor was open for the discussion and group work which came up with the Child and Youth Declaration on DRR. It was specially focus on the youth policy and strategy need to focus to the disaster issues in Nepal. The workshop provided a platform to share the experience of youths and their future recommendation. A memorandum was developed as an output of the workshop.
Followed by the symposium, the thematic painting was done in the canvas by youth artists and street children along with many audiences from different sectors. All the participants contributed their creative ideas on different themes in the form of art on a 6 feet long canvas. Reflecting the disasters that are caused naturally along with the Man-Made disasters was given different colors. The precautions to protect ourselves from natural disasters and measures to control man-made disasters were well exposed by the arts.
Then the event ended with the signature campaign and a balloon flying activity by the youths at the Dasharath Stadium, Tripureswor entailing the IDDR Day slogan.