The Philippines is no doubt severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite this challenge, hope and inspiration for all Filipinos continue to rise as innovation opportunities reveal themselves amidst the crisis. In fact, according to the Global Innovation Index 2020, the Philippines moved up to the 50th spot from its 54th rank last 2019 among 131 economies. Local innovators need nurture and support for their ideas to become a reality and for them to create a positive impact to the society. Supporting this advocacy is the Pinnovation Academy Project of the Community Led Innovation Partnership (CLIP) together with the Humanitarian Innovation Fund (HIF-Elrha), Asia Disaster Reduction and Response Network (ADRRN)-Tokyo Innovation Hub (ATIH), START Network, the Center for Disaster Preparedness (CDP), and the Philippine Preparedness Partnership (PHILPREP). As a part of the project’s awareness raising activities, a national virtual forum dubbed as “Talakayang Pinnovation: Ating Tuklasin at Kilalanin” was held last 27 May 2021.
Innovators from the three major hubs (Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao) together with the project’s local, provincial, regional, and national partners participated in the forum. Both innovators and partners alike learned about disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) measures. Moreover, they also tackled various topics on innovation such as the Innovation Ecosystem in the Philippines as discussed by the project’s Innovation Specialists, Ms. Mayfourth Luneta and Ms. Kei Bughaw.
Another highlight of the forum was the sharing of stories of success from Elrha and TUKLAS Innovators on each of the DRRM thematic areas. On Disaster Preparedness, Ms. Erma Ragasa of DepEd Makati discussed their innovation on Addressing a Key Gap in Post-Earthquake Contingency Plan. Another innovation project on Disaster Preparedness was a 3D Strategic Board Game called Foresight, shared by Ms. Jaina Ashlyn Awas of Plot and Play Ventures. This was then followed by Mr. Juan Miguel Torres of Lahat Dapat who talked about the Toolkit for Inclusive DRRM, a project on Disaster Prevention and Mitigation. On Disaster Response, Mr. Jing Rey Henderson of Caritas discussed about the Digitized Community Disaster Risk Mapping and Information for Efficient Humanitarian Response and Development Programming in the Philippines (DIGITAL PH). Lastly, there was a sharing by Mr. Fidel Ramos of Viqua Ph on their Compact Mobile Hybrid Water Treatment Systems, an innovation on Disaster Recovery and Rehabilitation. As the innovators went along their discussions, they tackled the processes they went through, the struggles and challenges they encountered, and the impact they contributed to the innovation ecosystem of the Philippines.
This learning exchange of past, present, and future innovators inspired and encouraged the Pinnovation Innovators to pursue their local innovative DRRM solutions. PHILPREP continues to support this initiative of pursuing localization and letting the community leadership reign in creating local solutions. PHILPREP is a tri-partite partnership of the Office of Civil Defense (OCD), Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), and CDP, established through the Asian Preparedness Partnership (APP).