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Vietnam responds to Int’l Day for Disaster Reduction

The Central Steering Committee for Disaster Prevention and Control, UNICEF, UNDP and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) held in Hanoi on October 12 a ceremony in response to the International Day for Disaster Reduction to review impacts of natural disasters and climate change in recent years, thus defining orientations for future coordination activities.

Addressing the event, MARD Deputy Minister Nguyen Hoang Hiep said that the International Day for Disaster Reduction (October 13) aims to call for countries’ attention to fostering global culture of risk awareness and disaster reduction.

This year's theme is based on Target (d) of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030: 'Substantially reduce disaster damage to critical infrastructure and disruption services, among them health and education facilities, including through developing their resilience by 2030', with the message of “Build to Last”, which is very suitable for Vietnam in the current period, he said.

He expressed his hope that with the efforts of the Vietnamese Government and people, as well as the support of international organisations in terms of technical support solutions and disaster prevention facilities, Vietnam will increase its resilience against climate change and reduce damage caused by natural disasters. 

At the event, leaders of the agriculture ministry signed memoranda of understanding on cooperation in the framework of the Partnership for Environment and Disaster Risk Reduction (PEDRR). This activity will mark an important step to lift the comprehensive and close cooperation between the Vietnamese Government and partners in preventing, fighting and reducing disaster risks and climate change impacts.

Also at the ceremony, Rana Flowers, UNICEF Vietnam Representative, presented awards to winners of the “Saving the Earth” Comic Contest, themed “Children create Superhero to fight against natural disasters and climate change”.

Held for Vietnamese children aged between 10 and 15, the contest aimed to raise children’s awareness of disaster prevention and create conditions for them to promote creativity and show their thoughts and dreams of disaster prevention and climate change adaptation.

The General Department of Disaster Prevention and Control, UNICEF and the Voice of Vietnam (VOV) jointly launched a contest to find initiatives on disaster combat and climate change adaptation for coastal residents.

At the end of the ceremony, deputy head of the Central Steering Committee for Disaster Prevention and Control Tran Quang Hoai introduced three activities, including the “Be va cac vi than” (Kids and Genies) programme, a contest on disaster prevention for members of the Ho Chi Minh Vanguard Children’s Union, and a ceremony to launch the first national press award on disaster prevention and control.

The Central Steering Committee for Natural Disaster Prevention and Control in cooperation with the Ministry of Information and Communications, Vietnam Journalists Association and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) also launched the first national press award on natural disaster prevention and control in 2019 with the topic "Mitigation of losses due to natural disasters - Proactive adaptation to climate change starting in the community".

The award will recognize and commend collectives and individuals that have made practical contributions to the dissemination of information on disaster prevention and control. It will also contribute to raising the awareness and responsibility of organizations and individuals in finding out, judging and reflecting the actual situation, lessons learned, approaches and solutions to natural disaster prevention. It is expected to encourage the media to renew contents, modes of information and communication on natural disaster prevention and control, while strengthening the coordination between the disaster prevention agencies with the mass media, organizations and individuals.

There are 05 types of newspapers considered for the award: Print Newspaper, Electronic Newspaper, Radio, Television and Press Photo.

All Vietnamese citizens, including professional and non-professional journalists whose press works conform to the criteria of the Prize, are entitled to submit their entries.

Time for submissions is from the launching date to the end of March 31, 2020.