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Training of Trainers: key to widening the reach of DRR education in communities

Training of Trainers (ToT) is one of the primary learning methods used by the Center for Disaster Preparedness in imparting knowledge and developing capacities of its partners in almost all of its engagements with local government units. It was during the first phase of the Disaster Risk Reduction Through Education and Managing Barangay Integrated Goals toward Disaster Resilient Communities and Schools (DRREAMBIG) Project that CDP trained and mentored a pool of trainers not only from its barangay local government, but from the teachers of primary schools within the partner barangays as well.

Towards the end of the first phase, CDP has trained and mentored not only the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Offices from Basud and Paracale, it also capacitated DRRM Officers from the 12 Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Offices and 20+ School Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Offices of Camarines Norte, both in elementary and high school, who actively participated in the ToT for CC CBDRRM.

In conducting ToT, members of the Training and Capacity Development Program train community leaders, particularly the school teachers and barangay officials, of partner barangays of the project. They will be then ask to re-echo the learnings and trainings to their barangays by targeting puroks or zones. It is during these roll-outs that volunteers from the community who show immense potential in cascading the invaluable lessons in CC CBDRRM are tapped and mentored further by the now experienced barangay trainers, with the guidance of CDP community organizers, to help in educating other puroks in their barangay. The purok re-echo trainings were usually done during weekends because it is during this time that breadwinners and heads of families are available to attend the training, and the school teachers to facilitate training modules.

CDP is now on the the second phase of the DRREAMBIG project with Paracale as its lone partner municipality. Widening the scope of the people being involved and trained in CC CBDRRM is imperative if the project wants to make greater impact to the children and youth living in at-risk areas of its partner barangays, and their families. So in its second phase, the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, composed of department heads, key municipal staff, and the honorable mayor, Hon. Lourdes Villamonte Briguera, were the primary target of the ToT on CC CDBDRRM which was held in Calabanga, Camarines Sur on April 19-21, 2017. Members of the barangay councils and teachers of the elementary schools from the partner barangays, Dalnac and Labnig, were also invited; including representatives from the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction nand Management Office and local civil society organizations (CSOs) and media group namely, Samahang ng Mga Mangingisda ng Paracale, Ban Toxics, Kabalikat Civicom, and Radyo Natin.

In this training, the participants of the first CC CBDRRM ToT from the barangay local government unit and the Camarines Norte Division Office of the Department of Education were invited as facilitators. Some of them were Kagawad Edwin Barcena and Ms. Delia De Leon of Brgy. Dalnac, who facilitated discussions on CC CBDRRM as an approach and Children’s Rights and Child Protection Laws, respectively. Aside from them, Mr. Manuel Obal from the DepEd Division Office, also a trained facilitator from a CDP project in nearby Municipality entitled, Sustainable and Resilient Agribusiness Development in Mercedes, Philippines (SARAM), also played a major role as facilitator in the ToT on CC CBDRRM for the Municipality of Paracale. They are set to commence with the re-echo trainings in May 24-25, 2017, this time to all of barangay leaders of the 27 barangays in Paracale, which they have strategically divided in clusters based on geographical considerations. The said barangay officials are then going to be mentored to roll out the CC CBDRRM trainings to the people within their barangay, targeting puroks or zones.

This is how CDP works with community, always has been. It empowers duty-bearers first to make sure they are given the proper tools, knowledge, and arsenal to enshrine the rights of their constituents, allowing peer-to-peer learning among municipal leaders and councils, and in this particular project, the education sector. This inspires them to do more and achieve more. Capacity Development works when those people whom you equipped with knowledge and skills are now the one transferring the technology.

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