Liberia: UNMIL Humanitarian Situation Report No. 154

Situation Report
Originally published
21 September - 27 October 2008


- Environmental Awareness Raising and Disaster Response

- Validation Workshop of Contingency Plan

- Leadership and Governance Training

Environmental Awareness Raising and Disaster Response

A two-day Environmental Awareness Raising workshop organized by UNDP in collaboration with UNMIL and the Environmental Protection Agency took place from 24 - 25 September in Greenville, Sinoe County. It was the second regional workshop (the first was in Tubmanburg organised for representatives of Bomi, Grand Cape Mount and Gbarpolu Counties), providing local government partners with basic knowledge on environmental issues, especially county specific environmental issues, disaster management and contingency planning. It is intended, that the regional Environmental Awareness Raising and Disaster Response workshops will enable stakeholders on the ground to monitor the situation and to respond rapidly in case of an emergency. Around 50 participants including County Superintendents, representatives from line ministries, County Commissioners and community leaders, discussed the following: climate change and its impact on the environment; county-specific natural disasters and disaster management; risk reduction processes; contingency planning; and how to conduct assessments and monitoring trips. The next regional workshop will take place in Harper, Maryland County in December will cover Maryland and Grand Kru Counties.

Validation Workshop of Integrated Contingency Plan for Natural Disasters in Liberia

On 16 - 17 October in Gbarnga, Bong County, over sixty participants including representatives of Ministry of Internal Affairs, Ministry of Justice, House of Representatives, Liberia Fire Service, Liberia Refugee Repatriation and Resettlement Commission, UNMIL, UN agencies and international and national NGOs, analysed the Integrated Contingency Plan for Disasters in Liberia. The workshop was organized by the National Disaster Relief Commission of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and was supported by UNDP Bureau for Crisis Prevention and Recovery. After consolidation of all inputs made during the two-day event, the Contingency Plan was validated. It will be submitted to the President in November for endorsement/approval.

Currently, the Government of Liberia along with partners is reviewing the country's current disaster management system and policies on disaster risk reduction. The Integrated Contingency Plan for Response to Disasters is formulated as part of the National Action Plan for Disaster Risk Reduction. Key objectives of the Plan are as follows:

- To provide an effective and coordinated response to disasters immediately after they occur;

- To reduce suffering among the affected communities by addressing the immediate and life-saving needs of people, with special emphasis on vulnerable groups;

- To provide an effective forum for collaboration between Government and aid organizations in responding to emergencies caused by disasters; and

- To establish the basis for post-disaster recovery by linking emergency and recovery assistance.

The review will help strengthen national response capacity and mitigate the risk of natural and human-induced disasters.

Leadership and Governance Training in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County

On 13- 17 October, a five-day Leadership and Governance Training for all County Superintendents and Assistant Superintendents for Development from the 15 counties took place in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County. The training was a joint effort of the UN-Habitat in Nairobi, Ministry of Internal Affairs, UN County Support Team and the Liberian Institute for Public Administration. The training aimed to increase county leadership in development within the framework of the implementation of the Government's Poverty Reduction Strategy.