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Pacific Disasters Prompts Education in Emergencies Workshop in Port Vila, Vanuatu

“Participants have the opportunity to develop their understanding of educational responsiveness following a disaster in their countries. It is envisaged that all countries represented at the workshop will be able to support national level planning for education response at the national level,” said Ms. Abrioux.

PORT VILA, 7 September, 2009 – The Pacific region faces a number of risks from natural disasters and is particularly vulnerable to cyclones, tsunamis, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
This has prompted the Vanuatu Ministry of Education, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and Save the Children’s Fund to hold an education in emergencies workshop from September 7th-11th in Port Vila.
UNICEF Chief of Education, Ms. Emmanuelle Abrioux said “education in emergencies is of global concern, as emergency work in the past has not paid sufficient attention to the educational needs of children, teachers and communities in the aftermath of a disaster.

“In fact Education, until recently was not included as a core response to emergency situations and schools have frequently been used as evacuation centers, thereby limiting children’s access to education after a disaster. It is essential that education be seen as a key response to supporting national, parental and community needs and to grounding dislocated and suffering children in a manner that is responsive to their needs within a safe and protective environment,” she said.

She also added “it was equally important that Education Ministries take a lead role in co-ordinating education in emergency initiatives.”Ms. Abrioux said “regional participants will be able to apply their knowledge and skills to education in emergency preparedness and response, create a plan for roll out of capacity building activities including training at national and provincial/district levels and identify roles and responsibilities for effective education in emergencies coordination.”Participants attending the workshop are key education in emergency personnel from Vanuatu, Fiji, Kiribati and Solomon Islands.“Participants have the opportunity to develop their understanding of educational responsiveness following a disaster in their countries. It is envisaged that all countries represented at the workshop will be able to support national level planning for education response at the national level,” said Ms. Abrioux.

 

 
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