Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) is the first of seven Caribbean countries to receive training on Post Disaster Needs Assessment from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) subregional headquarters for the Caribbean.
The training took place from 22nd to 25th June 2015, and brought together expertise of the Damage and Loss Assessment (DaLA) methodology of ECLAC Caribbean and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) of Trinidad and Tobago.
Other countries to soon benefit from these training sessions are Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, and Saint Lucia.
As a result of this training, officials from SVG’s infrastructure, energy, transport, and water and sanitation sectors will in future be better equipped to understand the macroeconomic impacts of natural disasters.
Caribbean countries suffer repeated losses from natural hazards almost on an annual basis, in the form of flash floods, wind storms and landslides. In addition, Caribbean islands are also vulnerable to earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, which have severely impacted the region over the past two centuries and certainly in the past two decades.
While countries have made substantial progress in strengthening their capacities in disaster management, for example in early warning, preparedness and response, there has been less progress in assessing the full costs of hazard impacts and the cost-benefit of disaster risk reduction strategies.
The ECLAC/UNDP partnership will enable ECLAC to explain the scope and benefit of the DaLA methodology to more countries in the Caribbean, thus reaching a larger number of institutional representatives.