Oliver Bugarin 4 0 0 6 min to read

Disaster rebuilding software to be released by OCD, DOST, and World Bank on September 14

On September 14, the World Bank (WB) and the government’s science and disaster response departments will debut the “PlanSmart Ready to Ready Rebuild” web tool.

The PlanSmart Ready to Rebuild web app is an automated planning tool that the Office of Civil Defense described in a Facebook post as having the potential to “revolutionize disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) planning processes in the country by helping the government, especially the local government units (LGUs), to more efficiently plan for disasters, work smarter, and rebuild forward faster.”

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs), the Office of Civil Defense, and the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) through the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) are partners with the WB in this program (OCD).

We created the PlanSmart Ready to Rebuild software as a catalyst for better and more efficient planning. LGUs now have access to capabilities through the app that will allow them to obtain and evaluate data-driven information important to DRRM planning quickly. It is now possible to create a local RRP more quickly and effectively, which used to take months, according to DOST Secretary Renato U. Solidum Jr.

The app will help LGUs create their Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan (RRP) more quickly and enhance pre- and post-disaster planning and decision-making.

It makes use of the Ready to Rebuild (R2R) Program and the GeoRiskPH Integrated Platform to automatically generate a Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan using a Pro-forma RRP document template.

“The PlanSmart Ready to Rebuild app is the first of the PlanSmart products that DOST is now creating in partnership with our partners. We remain steadfast in our commitment to the idea that these automated technologies will encourage a data- and science-based approach to governance.

With the help of the R2R Program, nearly 1,800 participants from 350 LGUs and national government organizations strengthened their capacities. They created their own RRPs well in advance of natural and man-made disasters.

The program comprised pre- and post-disaster operations, including obtaining disaster baseline data, developing an RRP and financing and implementing it, supporting emergency procurement, developing a communications strategy, and putting monitoring and evaluation measures in place.

“We are devoted to consistently assisting the Philippine Government in achieving more adaptable and effective disaster rehabilitation and recovery plans. According to Ndiamé Diop, WB director for the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, and Brunei, LGUs and communities, particularly those most at risk, may substantially benefit from tools like the PlanSmart Ready to Rebuild web app and be empowered to take care of their resilient recovery from disasters.

Along with its release, the PlanSmart app also heralds the start of a series of training sessions aimed at teaching local government units (LGUs) how to use the app to create their own RRPs, particularly data managers, DRRM officers, planning officers, and other staff members involved in disaster rehabilitation and recovery programs. Over 400 people from 137 LGUs in the National Capital Region, Region 4-A (Calabarzon), Bicol, Central Visayas, and Caraga would benefit from the training program during its experimental phase.

“Our local government units (LGUs), who are at the forefront of reducing and managing disaster risks, can learn a lot from this training session. We anticipate that the PlanSmart Ready to Rebuild software will help local decision-makers and planners be ready even before disasters occur, together with the complementing capacity-building program. More importantly, we want to provide them the tools they need to recover quicker, stronger, and better, said Raymundo Ferrer, executive director of the NDRRMC and the OCD administrator.

Graduates of the R2R Program, LGUs with an existing GeoRiskPH memorandum of agreement with DOST-Phivolcs, and LGUs that the Cabinet Cluster has determined on Climate Change Adaptation, Mitigation and Disaster Risk Reduction to be most vulnerable to climate change and disasters will all be included in the pilot LGUs.

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