Pampanga aims for Gawad KALASAG Seal and Special Awards in DRRM

City of San Fernando, Pampanga – Governor Dennis “Delta” Pineda expressed confidence in the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) as they strive to secure the prestigious Gawad KALASAG Seal and Special Awards for Excellence in Disaster Risk Reduction and Management and Humanitarian Assistance. 

The council participated in the 2023 Regional Field Validation held at the Benigno Aquino Hall on Monday, July 10.

Gawad KALASAG, the current recognition scheme established by the National Disaster Coordinating Council, aims to acknowledge outstanding performance in disaster management projects and activities, as well as commend the provision of humanitarian aid and assistance to affected communities. This recognition extends to local disaster coordinating councils, private and volunteer organizations, local and international NGOs, donor agencies, and the communities themselves.

In his opening speech, Governor Pineda expressed his firm belief in the capabilities of the PDRRMC, not only in the pursuit of awards but also in their commitment to helping not only within the province but also in neighboring provinces. He stated, “Wala namang duda. For how many years, dumadaan tayo sa ganito, pero confident naman ako sa team natin, hindi lang sa ganitong bagay, kundi maging sa pagtulong natin within the province at sa ibang mga probinsiya. Good naman tayo lagi.” (There is no doubt. For how many years we have been through this, but I am confident in our team, not only in this aspect but also in our assistance within the province and in other provinces. We have always done well.)

During the event, the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO), under the leadership of Angelina Blanco, presented the necessary documents and requirements showcasing the highly functional and active nature of the PDRRMC.

A team of regional field validators meticulously reviewed and evaluated these documents, which would serve as the basis for selecting and endorsing the best province to the national validating team.

Richard Santos, the Chief of Policy Development & Planning Section and Regional Gawad KALASAG Focal Person from the Region 3 Office of Civil Defense (OCD), stated, “Based sa assessment na ginawa natin ngayon, masasabi nating na-meet ng Pampanga ‘yung required rating para ma-endorse sa national.” (Based on our assessment today, we can say that Pampanga has met the required rating to be endorsed at the national level).

The validation meeting was attended by officials from the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Science and Technology (DOST), National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Provincial Government of Pampanga, civil society groups, and people’s organizations.

Governor Delta extended his congratulations to the PDRRMC and expressed his gratitude to the members who showed their support during the validation. He remarked, “Congratulations po sa team, sa PDRRMC. Isa po tayo sa maie-endorse para sa national level and we are hoping na makuha pa rin po natin ‘yon.” (Congratulations to the team, to the PDRRMC. We are one of those to be endorsed at the national level, and we hope that we can still achieve that).

Following the validation, the regional field validators conducted site inspections at various PDRRMC facilities, including the Pampanga PDRRMO Building, Command and Control Center, PDRRMC Warehouse, 24/7 Operations Center, Cold Storage Facility, Avian Influenza Control Center, Storehouse Facility, and PDRRMC Training Center. These inspections showcased the available facilities, supplies, equipment, vehicles, and personnel, all of which are accessible 24/7 in case of emergencies. —Jasmine Jaso / Pampanga PIO