October 10, 2019
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) announced the dispatch of 15 young Filipinos for a study visit in Japan as part of its efforts to boost the Philippines' disaster management capability.
The recent earthquake in Central Luzon and Batanes as well as frequent tropical cyclones prompted the Philippine government to emphasize disaster resilience in its poverty alleviation efforts.
The 15 Filipino participants will be joining JICA's Knowledge Co-Creation Program – Young Leaders that aims to introduce young people to Japanese technology and practices, as well as to expose them to issues and challenges facing their sector. This year's batch will attend the Regional Revitalization in Disaster Prone Area course from October 16-30, 2019 and will visit Japan's Tohoku Region where the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami took place in 2011.
"Like the Philippines, Japan is not spared from natural disasters. The geographical locations of our countries make us particularly vulnerable to earthquakes and typhoons. I urge the Filipino participants to this year's training program to learn from Japan's experience, interact with officers and members of various Japanese institutions, and come back to the Philippines with an innovative mindset on disaster management," said Aya Kano, JICA Senior Representative.
This year's participants came from the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), Office of Civil Defense (OCD), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Agriculture (DA), Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), Department of Education (DepEd), National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), Eastern Samar State University, Development Bank of the Philippines (DBP), as well as the local governments of Municipality of Mobo in Aklan, and Tuguegarao City and non-profit group Katilingbanong Pamahandi sa Mindanaw Foundation, Inc.
Former KCCP Participant Jun Bonita of PHIVOLCS said of the program, "After the training in Japan, I learned about applying seismotectonics (earthquakes and faultlines) technology to guide decision-making for tsunami warnings and advisory from large earthquakes."
This year's participants will observe reconstruction activities in Iwate Prefecture, visit a recycling center in Morioka City, and attend lectures on tourism promotion, renewable energy, and livelihood activities following reconstruction.
Since the 1960s, people-to-people exchange and continuous sharing of Japanese knowledge and experiences with the Filipinos have strengthened Japan-Philippines bilateral relations.