Disaster Risk Reduction Project proves its worth
The Kadtuntaya Foundation, Inc. and Diakonie – Germany have implemented a partnership project from
August 2011 to January 2013entitled “Reducing Risk, Promoting Peace” – An Integrated Disaster Risk
Reduction, Recovery and Peace Program in Central Mindanao. The project combines disaster
preparedness, recovery support, and empowerment of communities affected by human-induced and
natural disasters in the Province of Maguindanao. It starts with building the capability of KFI as the
proponent organization, and then that of its partner municipalities such as Mamasapano, DatuSalibo,
ShariffSaydona and Rajah Buayan in the area of disaster risk reduction, management and civilian
In general, the project is aimed at increasing the communities’ capability to respond to the risks of
natural and human-induced calamities, which in the context of Maguindanao, more specifically refers to
perennial flooding, landslides and the seemingly unending cycle of violence.
As initial step for the attainment of the project goal, the project team conducted series of DRR trainings
during the 1st Quarter project implementation – August 2011 and also for the month of November
2011. As project strategy, the project conducted Training of Trainers for 20 KFI staff in Disaster Risk
Reduction Management (DRRM) on September, then, also DRR trainings for the Municipal Disaster Risk
Reduction Management Council (MDRRMC) of the four project site municipalities.
The trainings conducted during the six (6) quarters of project implementations were Disaster Risk
Reduction Management, Hazard Mapping, Risk Assessment and Vulnerability Analysis, Conflict
Management, Climate Change Awareness and Community Orientations of these trainings in 58
barangays of four municipalities covered by this project.
The project was implemented with the support and cooperation among local government units of each
municipality. Additionally, the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) who supervised all the programs and
policies mandated by the government on the issue of DRR has made the project ran smoothly for the
entire duration of the project period. It has done jointly with project implementation especially on a
kind of interventions to undertake to avoid duplication of activities to be conducted and programs to be
implemented. Other line agencies as well, made their commitment to go in hands with its
implementation such the Philippine Volcanology and Seismology, Philippine Red Cross – Cotabato
Chapter, PAGASA and Department of Science and Technology among others.
The project team conducted series of formal and casual consultation meetings with various
stakeholders. These purposely verified the actual necessities of the target areas, assessed the security of
the areas as measure to ensure the safety of the Project Staff, and established working rapport with
projected beneficiaries and even the residents of the adjacent areas.
Moreover, courtesy call had been conducted during the consultation meeting to tender the compulsory
courteousness to the LGU officials, and to initiate coordination and linkage for future partnership and/or
After the courtesy call to all LGUs concerned, the Project Launching in each municipality had conducted.
This served as the venue for confirmation of the official commencement of the project implementation,
sharing of the vital project information, i.e., the goal and objectives, strategies and duration, the
appropriate forum to clarify project limitations to avoid false expectations from the project
beneficiaries, affirmation of previously articulated acceptance, support, partnership and collaboration
for the project implementation – to influence co-ownership of the project and introduction of the
In consideration to the recent approval of the Republic Act 10121 on May 27, 2010 – the Disaster Risk
Reduction and Management Act of 2010, all of the target municipalities were categorically unaware of
the new law, thus, the structures were not yet organized or if there is, it is un-functional [like the case of
Rajah Buayan]. Hence, the Project Team organized and/or reactivated the Municipal Disaster Risk
Reduction and Management Council (MDRRMC) in each municipality. The MDDRMC of each
municipality will be considered as the Core Group and Quick Response Team.
The Formation of Community Based Communication and Information Systems and Local Communication
Teams (CBCISLCT) were conducted jointly during the Core Group Formation. The composition for this is
constituted by MDDRMC plus the Barangay Captains of each municipality.The objective in organizing the
CBCISLCT is for the fast and efficient reporting and transmittal of disaster incidence report to the
MDRRMC and to the OCD for proper action.
Each of the project site municipalities were able to make policies through Executive Orders and
Sangguniang Bayan (SB) Resolutions supporting and/or complementing the implementation of DRRM
and their respective DRR Contingency Plans. First, the Chief Executive or Mayor of each municipality
issued an Executive Order for the creation and/or re-activation of the MDRRMC. Second, another
Executive Order for the creation of Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (DRRMO) with
permanent position Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer and with corresponding staffs and,
third, a SB Resolution adopting the drafted DRR Contingency Plan of each municipality.
With the new paradigm of Philippine Laws pertaining to DRR, referral system became more unified and
standardized wherein the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) through
the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) is the direct agency to be referred and the OCD will be the
facilitator in information dissemination and actions directors including the monitoring.
In adherence to R.A. 10121, the project was able to established referral mechanism for response,
preparedness, prevention, mitigation, rehabilitation and recovery through government agencies.
Goals reached and their Impacts
With the positive result of Bangsamoro Framework Agreement between MILF and GPH, it lessened the
occurrence of man-made calamities in the project areas. Moreover, the mandate of the government in
the compliance and implementation of Republic Act 10121 – DRRM Act of 2010 and Republic Act 9729 –
Climate Change Act of 2009 strengthened the local communities’ proactive involvement. Thus,
vulnerable families during this event decreased either. According to the local DSWD and DILG reports,
within the project period and in an event of natural and human-induced calamities, the decline number
of casualties is evident. Subsequently, even the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council –
Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (RDRRMC-ARMM) reported a “zero” casualty on the lives of
constituents during the onslaught of typhoon Pablo which brought huge destruction on agriculture and
properties to some areas in the province of Maguindanao.
With the general objective to enhance the capacity of the four municipalities in the Province of
Maguindanao to effectively and efficiently respond to and reduce the effect and impact of natural and
human-induced disasters, capacity building program and lobbying initiatives conducted. Several
trainings related to DRR conducted and attended by the core group/quick response team and
community members. In addition to that, tapping the MDRRMC members to be the Quick Response
Team of their respective municipality was organized and met at least once monthly. In response, local
authorities designated the team as the command center during the occurrence of calamities in a 24-
hour monitoring and operations.
Aside from the installation of community based communication and information systems, DRR Plan
formulated in each of the four Municipalities. This came to actuality because of the trainings and
workshops catered by this project among target participants.
Local communities as recipients of the project were informed of the DRR issues. As to the result is
concerned, it increases the resiliency of the people in the community in confronting disaster. They have
become aware of what to do and what is not to do during the occurrence of calamities. Thus, it reduces
the casualties and to some extent lessens its impact to vulnerable individuals.
Knowing the effects of climate change, people in the community as well as the local leaders are work in
hands in identifying the causes of such phenomenon and in find ways in preventing its formidable
impact to their livelihood, daily activities and to their susceptible lifestyle. Observed behavioral changes
occurred specially on its adaptation concern, i.e. the local leaders initiate to promote organic farming,
strengthening of proper waste disposal ordinance in the locality, and planning for the tree growing
activities for future undertakings.
As part of the concern of this project is to promote peace so as to the response on the human-induced
calamities confronted in the project areas, local leaders become vigilant to the occurrence of such
skirmishes because of “rido” or family feud. Thus, they themselves take into account some
peacebuilding strategies on conflict transformation to find means for conflict resolution. Instances
happened in areas of DatuSalibo and Mamasapano wherein two conflicting families declared war
against the other brought tension to local residents. Because of the intervention of community leaders
of two barangays, resolution was made between and among them. Consequently, the conflict resolved.
All throughout the project period, good to say that smooth application of the activities was done
relevant to the very need of areas covered. With the inputs gained from each workshop and several
activities of the project, each municipality has established preparedness and mitigation plan on how to
confront disasters relevant to what they really need in the area. It strengthened also the awareness and
cooperation not just on the part of community leaders but most especiallyto the people in the
The communication and information system helped the locality in dissemination of information and
warnings from barangay to LGU up to the Provincial DRR and OCD and made the quick response
possible. Nevertheless, accurate information well established and timely. Moreover, it provided also a
more creative and indigenous way of warning system in informing people of the possible eventualities
Consequently, communities are more prepared than before in the context of calamities. However, with
its positive result, further skills training and workshops recommended for more proactive role of the
community in an event of disasters in the locality.
The Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) issue is totally new to KFIthus, this pilot project with Diakonie is very
important. Lessons were learned along its implementation. Significant learning for us is how to deal
with the root and the primary cause of the disasters experienced by the four recipient municipalities or
even by the entire island of Mindanao which is man-made in nature, the issue of peace and order.
The customary partnership has established of this project. Thus, this brought to a more fruitful attempt
in reducing risks among the target communities. In this case, strengthening their capacities and
expansion communities for future projects will be reasonable to flourisheither. Moreover, KFI is
planning to submit another proposal for the sustainability of the project and for its expansion to
neighboring towns complementary to what we have already been started in this project.