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Emergency Operations Centres (EOC) and Initial Damage Assessment” (IDA) training for Tonga

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12 November 2013 The National Emergency Management Office (NEMO), within the Ministry of Infrastructure, is coordinating training for agencies, which have roles and responsibilities under the national disaster risk management arrangements.

“Emergency Operations Centres” (EOC) and “Initial Damage Assessment” (IDA) courses will be conducted this week for participants from Tonga, Ha’apai and Vava’u at the national operations centre, Ministry of Infrastructure from Monday to Friday, November 4th to 8th, 2013. Support for the training is provided by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community’s Applied Geoscience & Technology Division (SOPAC) in collaboration with The Asia Foundation (TAF) and the USAID/Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) under the regional Pacific Disaster Risk Management Training Programme.

This training looks to assist NEMO and other response organisations to better implement national disaster risk management arrangements through the building of greater understanding among responsible partners in Tonga. The purpose of the EOC training is to provide knowledge and skills necessary for the establishment, operation, management, and administration of Emergency Operation Centres at national, island and organisational levels.  The EOC training provides participants with greater appreciation for agency roles and responsibilities, the management and flow of information and need for coordination of response efforts.

The IDA course aims to provide individuals who have been designated to conduct initial damage assessments with the process and techniques necessary to perform the tasks satisfactorily.

Tonga will continue to experience natural disasters such as cyclones, earthquakes, and tsunamis, which inflict heavy costs on both human and physical resources, not to mention damage to the country’s fragile environment.  Natural disasters continue to present significant obstacles to economic growth and development and disasters will continue to impact the country, hence the need for everyone to be prepared.  Training of this nature will ensure those who have roles and responsibilities, from government to local organisations, are better prepared.

The Government of Tonga developed a strategic Joint National Action Plan (JNAP) to integrate disaster risk reduction measures and climate change adaptation initiatives throughout the whole of government and the country.  Legislation and comprehensive emergency and disaster management plans provide guidance for the country to deal with events including arrangements for immediate response and relief efforts.

There is need for regular, on-going, training in different aspects of disaster risk management and training of this nature will ensure personnel of all relevant department, organisations and agencies are current in the knowledge of Tonga’s disaster management and disaster risk reduction plans and programs.  The training also provides an ideal opportunity to develop partnerships and networks among personnel responsible for disaster and emergency management in Tonga, thus ensuring a coordinated and integrated approach to the building of national capacity in disaster risk management.

The resource team for the course is: Ms. Kathryn Hawley (Director, Pacific Programs, The Asia Foundation, Fiji); Mr. Anthony Blake (Trainer – Fiji); Mr. Noa Tokavou (Disaster Management Advisor, SPC/SOPAC Division); and Mr Mafua Maka (Public Awareness Officer, NEMO, Tonga).




Issued by the : National Emergency Management Office (NEMO), Ministry of Infrastructure (MOI),Vaololoa, Nuku'alofa, Tel: 676 26340 or 676 23100, Fax: 676 28220, Email:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Last Updated ( Thursday, 14 November 2013 15:46 )  

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