SM Cares Holds Emergency Preparedness Forum for Children and Youth with Disabilities

by - July 10, 2018

Did you know that 1 out of 7 Filipino children or 5.1 million children are living with some kind of disability? They are the hearing-impaired, visually-impaired, mobility-impaired and developmentally disabled among others. But what happens when there’s an emergency situation and disaster struck?

During disasters, persons with disabilities, especially the young ones, are seen to be more disadvantaged due to their limitations on mobility and awareness and since they have different needs, they need different support during emergency situation.

This scenario is what prompt SM Cares, the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of SM Prime Holdings to once again hold an Emergency Preparedness Forum focusing on Children and Youth with Disabilities (between 10-30 years old) that happened last July 9, 2018 at Hall 3 of the SMX Convention Center, MOA Complex, Pasay City.

The forum aims to provide substantial information about the reality of a potential earthquake scenario in Metro Manila, as well as making them better prepared for disasters and calamities.

Engr. Bien C. Mateo, SVP for Mall Operations Director gave the welcome remarks and shared how the SM Cares Program advocates emergency preparedness.

Ms. Lotta Sylwander Country Representative, UNICEF Philippines provided statistical information and situation of the disabled in our country.

Dr. Renato Solidum, Jr. Undersecretary for Disaster Risk Reduction Department of Science 8: Technology (DOST), and Ofiicer-imCharge, Philippine Institute of Volcanology 8: Seismology (PHIVOLCS) discussed about "The Big One" in Metro Manila.

While Dr. Ted Esguerra, Operational Medicine instructor talked about Preparing for and Surviving an Earthquake.

Despite the bad weather forecast an estimated 1,000 people composed of young people who are blind, deaf, with physical/orthopaedic impairments, with Down syndrome, Autism, and with rare disorders along with their guardians attended said forum as well as the different PWD organizations and learning institutions.

Several participants get to experience first-hand emergency preparedness thru a simulation Drills conducted by Dr. Ted Esguerra and how the International Disaster Response Network do their part.

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