Great Lakes: Business acts on disaster
East African business leaders are to establish a regional body to help private enterprises prepare for catastrophe. The move was the culmination, this week, of the Federation-supported "Disaster 99", the first East African conference on disaster management for businesses. Held in Nairobi, it brought together 250 business people, top professionals in emergency response and disaster management, government policy makers, health and insurance experts, architects and managers of construction firms from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. The two-day summit sought to identify regional risks, provide guidelines and strategies for disaster management, and develop opportunity for public/private partnership. Organised by the private sector in partnership with the Federation, the Kenya Red Cross and the United Nations Centre for Human Settlements (Habitat), "Disaster '99" saw close to 30 speakers underline the fact that with urbanization growing apace the community is more and more vulnerable to disaster. Being prepared was not only good for business, the conference stressed, but impacted on the safety of employees, customers and the surrounding community.
The new regional group will promote a sense of urgency about disaster preparedness, advocate among government and business leaders, and encourage cooperation between private sector, authorities and disaster specialists like national Red Cross societies. The Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania Red Cross Societies were present at the conference, profiling their first aid and disaster management training programmes.
WEEKLY NEWS IS PUBLISHED BY THE INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF RED CROSS AND RED CRESCENT SOCIETIES
17 Chemin de Crets, Geneva
Tel: (41 22) 730 4222
Fax: (41 22) 733 0395