The Government of Dominica through the Office of Disaster Management in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is conducting a training workshop to help build capacity following natural disasters.
Twenty participants from the Local Government Department and National Emergency Planning Organization as well as those involved shelter management are being trained to better coordinate activities to assist those most vulnerable after a crisis.
The training workshop is just one of the components of IOM’s overall project in Dominica.
“Other components include support to the Colihaut Village Council to replace IT equipment which was lost in the flood and some upgrades to two of the Grand Bay shelters,” said National Project Coordinator for the Caribbean, IOM Guyana, Nathalie Hanley.
Regional Advisor for Emergency Post Crisis for the Americas, Luz Tantaruna who is one of the facilitators at the workshop spoke in more detail about the training.
She said, “In this case, we are trying to build knowledge of the authorities in coordinating the sectors and the response for the affected people in movement and within affected communities. We are also trying to build knowledge in planning for crises- what to do with the people affected and how to work with them.”
Programme Officer at the ODM, Steve Joseph says the workshop comes at a time when a sense of normalcy has emerged after Erika. He says it’s a good time to re-evaluate coordination efforts prepare for potential events.
“I think the training is very important; it is setting some international context for dealing with displaced persons as well as refugees. It also deals with camp management and coordination; and being very clear on the different roles and how they come together for the welfare of the affected people.”
Some of the challenges following the August storm included the complexity and diversity of persons at shelters, the effective management of resources, the provision of healthcare and transport and limited human resource.
“The conversation is bringing a number of issues to the fore and we are hoping that learning will translate into our ability to respond in a more effective and efficient manner.”