Many cities have been disrupted this year by disasters: earthquakes in Haiti, Chile and New Zealand; floods and heavy rainfalls in Pakistan, Eastern Europe, Mozambique and other parts of Africa; forest fires in Russia; and volcanic eruptions in Indonesia and Iceland. All have caused huge human suffering and economic damage. Cities have never been so at risk.
More action is needed to anticipate the negative impacts of such disasters; no city is immune.
13 Mediterranean cities have already joined the campaign: Alexandria, Cairo and Sharm Al-Sheikh in Egypt; Amman in Jordan; Aleppo and Homs in Syria; Saida, Beirut, Byblos and Tripoli in Lebanon; Istanbul and Yalova in Turkey; Venice in Italy.
Is your city GETTING ready?
What are you doing to make cities more resilient and protect citizens?
UNISDR, member of the PPRD South Managing Consortium”, encourages all partners, National Platforms for Disaster Reduction and cities to use the International Day for Disaster Reduction to raise awareness on how to build resilience to disasters, to publicize the "ten essentials" and how YOUR community, town, city or province is advancing in getting ready.
Ideas for the International Day for Disaster Reduction:
- Organize radio programs, press briefing or public debates on how your community/municipality/city is getting ready: Read the UN Secretary-Generals message and add a message from your Mayor or other personalities on what is being done in your community;
- Organize a disaster drill or exercise preparedness plans in your community/ school/ municipality/ city
- Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies might want to launch the 2010 World Disaster Report on Urban Risk in their communities that day and discuss what can be done in partnership with others
- Launch the call for nominations for good practice and candidates for the UN-Sasakawa Award for Disaster Risk Reduction, which will feature achievements in making cities resilient. The Award will be delivered in May 2011 at the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Geneva
- Showcase to the public ("open day" or round tables) any visible activity or project undertaken by participants in the campaign (see www.unisdr.org/campaign - Section ?How to get engaged in the campaign?)
- Promote the One Million Save Schools and Hospitals Pledging Initiative and encourage pledges. (The initiative calls for pledging of specific schools and hospitals to be safe, sign-up for individuals or groups to become advocates or champions, collects good practice and provides guidance documentation prepared by partners and /or UNISDR.)
The attachment includes the ideas for the International Day for Disaster Reduction (see above) and a list of events UNISDR is directly involved.