Regional Experts from Civil Protection Agencies and Emergency Management Agencies of the Central American, Caribbean and South America (Argentinian Blue Helmets), came together in Honduras, to exchange experiences, good practices and lessons learned in the efforts to increase resiliency, coordination and cooperation efforts.
As part of the visit, the Honduran Emergency Management Agency COPECO, gave a tour of the modern installations that COPECO now has, to the Regional Experts. COPECO has, these past 3 years, been under the Direction of Minister Lisandro Rosales, and his efforts in advocating for funds, in the international community has proven great results in increasing capacity, capabilities and competencies. Because of the transparent and effective execution of international financial aid, Honduras, in the Emergency Management and Risk Management area, has become a Regional Model of Institutional Strengthening.
EXPERTOS EN GESTION DE RIESGO DE CENTROAMERICA VISITAN COPECO | Comisión Permanente de Contingencias – COPECO – República de Honduras.
I am frequently amazed on how the (COPECO) Honduran Emergency Management Agency is getting better prepared. Today in Honduras, COPECO and the Foreign Relations Ministry, have duly presented, to the national authorities, as well as the International Cooperating Community and the Diplomatic Service in Honduras, the Manual for the Humanitarian Office of Foreign Aid Assistance and Coordination (Centro de Coordinación de Asistencia Humanitaria Internacional CCAHI).
These types of formalities are needed in order, for the cooperating agencies, NGOs, countries and others willing to help, to better ask for and receive the incoming aid. “Cooperation With Dignity” is the Central American Slogan for Humanitarian Assistance, and with this CCAHI manual, cooperation is definitely expected to be better handled and ultimately distributed.
How can we (as Emergency Management Agencies) better coordinate humanitarian assistance support? How often should we put the Manual to Practice (exercises, Table tops, functional, full-scale), and how flexible is the Manual in order to adapt to scalable situations/incidents that have already surpassed the capability of response? How often is the country overwhelmed with response and humanitarian capabilities?
Below (PHOTO) of Minister Lisandro Rosales from COPECO presenting the Manual to the International Diplomatic Community and Cooperating Agencies
I am from the amazing beautiful, tropical, green and loving Republic of Honduras. Located in the top most vulnerable areas in the Planet.
Before I came down to Washington DC, I had the privilege to work at the Comisión Permanente de Contingencias COPECO (@FEMA Analogue). Today I was wondering why, COPECO, and the other analogue emergency management agencies of the region, don’t have cooperation agreements directly with FEMA. USAID/OFDA does an amazing job at aiding and coordinating effort with Honduras and the region. But when it comes to good practices and lessons learned, shouldn’t it be the FEMA the agency willing to also contribute their good practices and knowledge with the world? As a secondary effect, a common language and standards can begin to replicate throughout the hemisphere.
For example, utilizing the Interamericana Network For Disaster Mitigation (ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATE PLATFORM) http://www.oas.org as a tool for gathering experts from FEMA, Canada Emergency Management Agency, et’ all, to share good practices with other countries.
Hopefully the results of such a voluntary effort, will bring the Western Hemisphere together, in the amazing and great task of Emergency Management, Business Crisis and continuity management, Disaster Risk Reduction and and overall, Human sustainable development.