A training course on Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) was conducted on February 23 to 27, 2015, for the TWG members of the Cordillera Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CRDRRMC) . It was attended by 38 technical staff from the various regional agencies that are members of the CRDRRMC tasked in disaster mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery.

Held at the Crown Legacy Hotel, the training was conducted by the Office of Civil Defense-CAR. It featured lectures and tabletop and field exercises, all aimed at providing the participants with an understanding of the framework, methodologies and steps in conducting a PDNA. The resource persons included OCD Directors Ana Caneda of Region 10 and Liza Mazo of CARAGA who were involved in preparing the PDNA for the areas devastated by tropical storm Sendong and super typhoon Yolanda. The field exercise, meanwhile, enabled the participants to simulate needs assessment with site visits of disaster incidents in Baguio City as case studies. These included landslides, flooding and fire.

The PDNA is a government-led exercise to align recovery efforts in a coordinated way. It generates information on economic damages and losses and the recovery priorities – including the human development needs, of the affected population. These shall then be used as basis for the formulation of the Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan (RRP) which will guide infrastructure reconstruction, governance, and the provision of social services and livelihood to the affected areas. NEDA, as the chairperson of the RDRRMC Committee on Rehabilitation and Recovery, leads in the formulation of the RRP.

The capacitation of the CRDRRMC, according to OCD-CAR Director Andrew Alex Uy, will not only prepare the region for calamities but will also provide a ready pool of experts that could provide assistance to other regions in times of disasters. (Joey H. Dado, with egdaquipil)