DRI Leadership Perspectives: Resilience in the Philippines at the BCMAP Summit
By Kelsey Rose
DRI Director of Global Operations
Most of us will remember Haiyan-Yolanda, the typhoon that devastated the Philippines in 2013. Following Typhoon Haiyan-Yolanda, the DRI Foundation partnered with Habitat for Humanity to help rebuild the lives and livelihoods of those affected. Since then, the people and organizations of the Philippines have been working tirelessly to ensure that the Philippines is more resilient in the face of future disasters, the occurrence of which is unfortunately certain for this nation in the Pacific Ring of Fire. DRI has been proud to partner with the Business Continuity Management Association of the Philippines (BCMAP) through DRI Philippines and other initiatives to contribute to this critical cause.
Earlier this month, I had the honor of traveling to Manila, Philippines to deliver the key note address for BCMAP’s first annual Business Continuity Summit. My presentation was titled “Global Trends in Business Continuity” and discussed the findings of DRI’s Future Vision Committee, as well as the resources we provide to help professionals act on those trends. I was extremely impressed by the ideas and conversations shared by attendees as well as reports of resilience initiatives around the country.
As fate would have it, the day of the summit coincided with a National earthquake drill. A first for me, a native of the northeastern United States where earthquakes mostly exist in news reports, I was eager to witness and participate in an exercise being carried out by organizations in all parts of the country.
The following day, summit invitees were invited to tour the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation’s (PDRF) Emergency Operations Center in Clark about three hours outside of Manila. PDFR, a private sector organization tasked with promoting disaster management, impressively brings together businesses around the country to prepare for disaster. Their new EOC facilities feature classrooms, a research center, an impressive command center and more. It is a striking and encouraging example of ways that corporations can work together to not only protect themselves from the effects of disasters, but also educate and empower SMEs and the community to do the same.
The summit activities concluded this week with a Business Continuity course offered by DRI Philippines. While the Philippines faces unique challenges as a country prone to earthquakes, typhoons, volcanic eruptions and other events, efforts from organizations such as BCMAP and PDRF prove that they are on the path to greater resilience.