IDDRR Rally 2019: Promoting Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Building

  Oct 13, 2019

IDDRR Rally 2019: Promoting Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Building

Patan, Nepal - On October 13th, 2019, the Secretariat of the National Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (DPNet-Nepal), in coordination with the Ministry of Home Affairs and the All Nepal National Independent Teachers' Association for Geospatial and Disaster Management (AINTGDM), successfully organized a rally to mark the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction (IDDRR) 2019. The rally, supported by the Ministry of Home Affairs, AINTGDM members, Action Aid, and Plan International, aimed to initiate the week-long program for IDDRR 2019 and raise public awareness about disaster risk reduction (DRR). Despite being the last day of the Dashain festival, a public holiday, and the visit of the President of China to Nepal, the rally witnessed broad participation, with approximately 450 participants representing government agencies, security agencies, DPNet-Nepal, Lalitpur Metropolitan City, AINTGDM, private sectors, academia, UN agencies, and NGOs.

The IDDRR Rally 2019 showcased several notable highlights:

  1. Rally Route and Slogans: The rally commenced at 7:15 AM, starting from Patan Durbar Square and marching towards Jawalakhel. Participants carried banners displaying the slogan "reduce disaster damage to critical infrastructure and disruption of basic services" in the colors of the Nepal government, National Platform for DRR, and AINTGDM. Placards with key messages on DRR, emphasizing the importance of reducing disaster damage to critical infrastructure and basic services, were prominently displayed throughout the rally.
  2. Addressing Stakeholders: Mr. Surya Bahadur Thapa, Chairperson of DPNet-Nepal, expressed satisfaction with the progress made in DRR and highlighted the increased focus on mainstreaming DRR at the local level. He emphasized the need for all stakeholders to prioritize DRR and recognized the rally as just the beginning, with DRR programs continuing throughout the year. He expressed gratitude to all participants for their active involvement in the rally.
  3. Importance of DRR: Ms. Indu Ghimire, Joint Secretary and Chief of the Disaster and Conflict Management Division at the Ministry of Home Affairs, thanked all rally participants and highlighted the global significance of IDDRR. She emphasized the need to prepare for potential future disasters, even in pleasant weather conditions, to minimize risks and protect lives and infrastructure. Ms. Ghimire emphasized the importance of considering DRR while building infrastructure, as inadequately designed structures can contribute to loss of life. She concluded by calling for collective efforts to create a safe environment through individual contributions to DRR.
  4. Local Initiatives and Monitoring: Ms. Gita Satyal, Deputy Mayor of Lalitpur Metropolitan City, stressed the inevitability of disasters and the need to identify methods for risk reduction. She emphasized that the rally's message should extend beyond the event itself and reach the community through ongoing message-sharing and awareness efforts. Ms. Satyal highlighted Lalitpur Metropolitan City's long-standing commitment to DRR, implementing building codes since 2003. However, she emphasized the importance of continuous government and stakeholder engagement in DRR and the need for robust monitoring mechanisms to ensure the effective implementation of building codes.
  5. Focus on Disaster Risk-Informed Development: Mr. Bhagirath Pandey, Chief District Officer of Lalitpur district, delivered closing remarks, aligning with the IDDRR slogan. He emphasized the importance of providing uninterrupted services by reducing disaster losses in infrastructure. Mr. Pandey stressed the need for disaster risk-informed infrastructure development, where DRR considerations are integrated into all aspects of development. He expressed gratitude to all participants for their active engagement in the rally.

The IDDRR Rally 2019 successfully kicked off a week-long program focused on DRR and served as a platform to promote awareness and action toward reducing disaster risks. The event demonstrated the commitment of various stakeholders to prioritize DRR and emphasized the importance of collaboration and continued efforts to build resilience in Nepal.