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CDERA unveils Model Integrated Relief Programme for the Caribbean

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St Georges, Aug 18, 2005 (CDERA) - The Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency (CDERA) has unveiled a new programme to improve disaster relief management across the Caribbean.
The Model Integrated Relief Programme (MIRP) was unveiled at a regional meeting in Grenada, attended by emergency managers drawn from the 16 member states of CDERA.

At the opening of the two-day conference, Coordinator of Jeremy Collymore, said that the CARICOM Agency has provided member states over the years with model policies and programmes but the adoption of some of them has been "too superficial" and did not benefit from the "the necessary stakeholder engagement".

In a strong address, Mr Collymore said that the relief programmes of the Caribbean must be people-centered.

"Within the context of disaster preparedness and response the mission of our programmes will have to be more people- and specifically more victim-centered. The driver of the entire process must be service - service in emergency and crisis situations. We therefore need to know who are the key actors involved in assessing the needs of victims, generating the response, managing the delivery, and facilitating the recovery."

The Model Integrated Relief Programme (MIRP) unveiled by CDERA seeks to provide a mechanism for identifying these key actors, defining their roles, and the necessary resources required to allow them to service disaster victims.

"This exercise, funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) was driven by the desire to minimize the very visible and sustained challenge in meeting victim needs in a manner that is clearly timely, appropriate, and transparent. Whilst this was most visible in Grenada, let's be honest and note that other Participating States also had similar challenges," Mr Collymore added.