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Streams of Solidarity: Capacity Building Programme on Disaster Preparedness
By Father Noel Maddhichetty SDB
Mumbai, Aug. 2. The first ever capacity building programme on Disaster Preparedness was held on 28th July, at Mathias Institute and Salesian Provincial House, Shillong, for the staff of the 3 North-Eastern Don Bosco PDO offices: Bosco Integrated Development Society-Shillong, Bosco Reach Out-Guwahati and AIDA-Dimapur. T
he training programme saw participation from 28 staff from the Provincial Development Offices (PDOs) including 14 religious from FMA sisters' congregation of the 3 provinces. Mr. Bablu Sarkar, State Office-West Bengal, Caritas India, was the resource person for the one-day capacity building programme.

Introducing the program of the day, Father Noel Maddhichetty, Director of Don Bosco Network, India, spoke of the impact of climate change, which has increased the frequency of disasters across the Globe. True to Don Bosco's preventive strategy in his mission for youth, Don Bosco International Network designed a manual to train its partners on the theme of Disaster Preparedness. This training programme was organized to present with the disaster preparedness document, 'Streams of Solidarity' published and released by Don Bosco Mondo at the International PDO Meet in Nairobi, in 2018.

Ms. Silvia Cromm from DBM, who spearheaded the designing of the document also created increased awareness about disaster preparedness, through her session in the Regional PDO Meet 2018, held in Bangalore. In continuation of this process of spreading awareness and increasing capacities in the disaster-prone South Asian region, the capacity building program was organised.

The one-day training program was made interactive and participatory through focus group discussions, interactive sessions, and sharing of past experiences of disasters by the participants. Mr. Bablu Sarkar ventured into strengthening not just the pre-disaster preparedness of the participants, but also focused extensively on executing post-disaster relief operations, accurate need identification of the disaster-struck community and a step-by-step guide on delivering tangible relief impact.

The day concluded with a brainstorming session and general discussion among the participants. At the end, Father Noel Maddhichetty, Director-Bosconet, thanked Mr. Bablu Sarkar for spearheading the session and appreciated the active participation of the trainees.

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