Through the Strengthening Institutions and Empowering Localities Against Disasters and Climate Change (SHIELD) Program, UN-Habitat has been working with local government units in assessing capacities and gaps, and conducting learning activities to boost climate and disaster action planning at the provincial level.
The SHIELD program supports eleven provinces and two regions in keeping communities resilient and its people safe through risk-informed development strategies, evidence-based tools, and strong multi-stakeholder partnerships.
Under the program, UN-Habitat leads the efforts in working with provinces in preparing risk and resilience-informed plans, investment programs, and finance accessing.
Assessing and building capacities
Initiating the groundwork with two provincial partners, the provinces of Northern Samar and Agusan del Sur, UN-Habitat conducted capacity needs assessment to evaluate the current use of Vulnerability and Risk Assessment tools by provincial local government units in their planning processes, identify capacity gaps and needs, and suggest areas for improvement and follow-up activities.
Informed by the results of the assessment, UN-Habitat conducted a workshop with the Provincial Government of Northern Samar on February 28 to March 2, 2023, to introduce the Provincial Climate Risks Diagnostics (PCRD) tool and apply it for risk analytics and planning in the province.
The PCRD tool, which was developed with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development, serves as a crucial instrument to support LGUs in climate and disaster action planning and in building sustainable and resilient communities. It aims to support planning and decision-making at the provincial level, investment structuring, and climate risk and resilience tracking at the regional and national level.
The capacity building activities on the PCRD tool will result into a provincial climate and disaster risk profile which will serve as basis for the province’s strategy formulation and project identification and prioritization. A similar workshop is scheduled with Agusan del Sur.
Collaboration for resilient provinces
UN-Habitat has also facilitated collaborations with other provinces.
On February 27, SHIELD consortium representatives Australian Embassy in the Philippines Counsellor for Development Thanh Le, UNDP Philippines Resident Representative Dr. Selva Ramachandran, and UN-Habitat Philippines Country Programme Manager Christopher Rollo paid a courtesy visit to the local government of Albay. The Provincial Government of Albay, represented by Provincial Administrator Sheina Onrubia-Dela Cruz affirmed support for SHIELD and expressed the province’s priorities on health, agriculture, climate and disaster resilience, urban mobility, and digitalization among others.
Scoping missions are also slated in the second quarter of 2023 in the provinces of Quezon, Agusan del Norte, and Eastern Samar.
SHIELD is supported by the Australia in The Philippines and is being implemented by UNDP Philippines and its consortium partners: UN-Habitat, Philippine Business for Social Progress, National Resilience Council, and the Consortium of Bangsamoro Civil Society, with the Department of the Interior and Local Government Philippines as the lead government agency.