Monks learn to manage disaster

Disaster: To increase the knowledge on disaster risk reduction and preparedness of nuns and monks, the Department of Disaster Management (DDM) and focal persons from central monastic body conducted disaster management training at Sangchoekhor monastic school in Paro.

The participants learned about natural hazards in the country, mapping the risk and capacities, non-structural mitigation, and the use of Hazard, Vulnerability, Capacity Assessment (HVCA) tools, among others, during the three-day training that ended on August 5.

Project manager with Save the Children, Karma Doma Tshering said that a pilot disaster risk management programme has been rolled out in four pilot monastic institutions, following the training between July and August this year.

A disaster management committee and teams were formed in Sangchoekhor monastery in Paro, Dechenphodrang monastery in Thimphu and Phochu Dumra Lobdra and Wolakha nunnery in Punakha.

Karma Doma Tshering said that the committees drafted their school’s disaster management plan after the committees were trained.

“The teams were also made aware of their roles and responsibilities,”she added.

Save the Children country office, in coordination with the disaster management department and Central Monastic Body, trained 12 representatives including principals, teachers and students from the four pilot institutions as focal persons for four days at Tango University of Buddhist Studies in Thimphu in June.

The project also provided the pilot schools with basic disaster management materials such as fire extinguishers, solar lamps, stretchers, fire buckets, blankets and tarpaulin sheets.

Save the Children in collaboration with the DDM and education ministry has  implemented a disaster risk reduction project to reduce and respond to natural hazards in the community schools and in monastic institutions.

Disaster Preparedness European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department and Save the Children, Norway funded the comprehensive disaster management project for education sector.

The project’s duration is from March 2015 to this month.

Dechen Tshomo  

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