To close its training course on Gender and Diversity in Disaster Risk Reduction, JICA invited the World Bank’s Disaster Risk Management Hub in Tokyo to speak and participate at the concluding public seminar and clients’ action planning presentations at JICA Tohoku in Sendai.
In total, 17 officials and NGO representatives from Bhutan, Chile, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka participated in JICA’s training course, which took place on December 5-16, 2016.
Working with key experts and practitioners from JICA in gender and disaster risk reduction, the group sought to learn how Japan builds disaster resilience across society and take these lessons back to their ministries responsible for social welfare, women’s and children’s affairs, and disaster management, as well as NGOs engaging vulnerable groups and providing services to communities.
Through the course, the participants were able to connect with officials, researchers, and NGOs working in the Tohoku region to rebuild following the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, including experts from Sendai City, Higashi-Matsushima City, the Government of Japan’s Reconstruction Agency, Shizuoka University, Tohoku University , Japan Women’s Network for Disaster Risk Reduction, among many others.
TURNING EXPERIENCE INTO ACTION
Throughout the sessions, the participants were encouraged to consider how to integrate tracking of women and vulnerable groups in disaster resilience efforts, implement inclusive engagement models that allow communities to explain their needs and execute needed policies and investments, and improve design of wider policy reforms and investments to reflect these needs.
In one key example shared by the DRM Hub with participants, authorities in Uttarakhand, India – clients supported under the Japan-World Bank Program for Mainstreaming DRM – made concerted efforts to better engage women in reconstructing their houses after the 2013 devastating flooding and landslides, including facilitating their bank access for reconstruction payments.
The DRM Hub also helped connect participants with resources on seismic risk identification and community-based mapping and inclusive community resilience, including the DRM Hub’s project documenting and replicating an innovative approach from Ofunato in Iwate Prefecture.
JICA and the World Bank continue to build on their collaboration on integrating gender in disaster resilience from the International Symposium on World Tsunami Awareness Day "Towards Resilient Recovery through Gender and Diversity Perspective" in October 2016.