First Session of the Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas

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One of the priorities defined in the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA), “to considerably reduce losses brought about by disasters both in terms of lives as in social, economic and environmental assets,” is that of the use of National and Regional Platforms which act as a forum for the exchange of information and knowledge on effective actions for disaster risk reduction. In this context, the First Session of the Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas was held in Panama in March, organized jointly by the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) and the Organization of American States (OAS). Over 300 people, representatives of countries in the Americas, cooperation agencies, civil society organizations, universities, the private sector and the scientific and academic community, analyzed proposals and ideas for implementation of actions and to create collaboration mechanisms. The aim was to close the gap between the Global Platform and the National Platforms in the Americas and to set up a formal mechanism which involves a wide range of relevant actors at the level of the hemisphere.

Through plenary and thematic sessions, progress which has been identified relating to the HFA was discussed, information on gaps, challenges and opportunities was exchanged and experiences and lessons learned were documented in issues such as health, water and sanitation, urban risk, climate change, education and communication, community development and information and knowledge management. The meeting was a first step in the setting up of this regional platform, but efforts need to be consolidated and concentrated during the next few months. It also facilitated the provision of input from the Americas region for the Second Session of the Global Platform to take place in Geneva, Switzerland from 16-19 June. For more information, visit www.eird.org.

New UN/ISDR Site on the Hyogo Framework for Action

In order to support access to information on the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015 (HFA) in the Americas and world-wide, the UN/ISDR has made available the wiki site “HFA-Pedia”. This website is useful for national, regional and global actors from the academic world, science, research, and civil society to become involved and share information, experiences, lessons learned, reports, information resources and any kind of details which are relevant to progress in the implementation of the HFA. Given its wiki format, the HFA-Pedia allows for editing, contributing and sharing as you wish. Access it at www.eird.org/wikien/index.php/Main_Page.

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