The Grand Sheraton Hotel in Panama City, Panama was the host for “Towards a More Resilient America,” a 2 day conference that aspired to identify new challenges, opportunities, and establish new cooperation alliances, all on the topic of Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR). The ISC ROLAC office was represented by Secretariat members MA Oscar Reyes, Science Officer, and Dr. Manuel Limonta, Regional Director. It was also represented by Dr. Allan Lavell and Dr. Alonso Brennes, experts from ISC ROLAC’s DRR Steering Committee. Other notable attendants were Raul Salazar, chief of the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR); Arazeli Mendes Nuñez, Vice-Minister of finance from the Ministry of Economy in Panama; Vinicio Cerezo Arevalo, ex President of Guatemala and General Secretary for the Central America Integration System(SICA); Seynabu Sakho, World Bank director for Central America; and other personalities of the DRR area and funding agencies
The main goal of the event was to identify new challenges and opportunities to strengthen the regional Disaster Risk Management Agenda in the next five years, with emphasis on the contribution of intersectoral coordination mechanisms at the regional level and the follow-up and support of multilateral cooperation agencies. ISC ROLAC was invited to participate in the discussions in the plenary sessions, as well as to establish links and collaboration with other organizations working in the DRR area. The office’s main goal in the event was to interact with other organizations that work in the same field, and to establish new cooperation links and strengthen the ones already made. It was also possible to present the work the office has done in the area of Disaster Risk Reduction. This was also an oportunity to propose joint work with funding organizations in the LAC region. Anothet topic discussed was the proposal of organizing funding the FORIN book with these orgaizations, agencies, and with the ISC ROLAC office.
There were several activities that took place during the two-day event. There were plenary sessions, lectures related to different aspects of DRR in CA. Dr. Allan Lavell and Dr. Alonso Brennes participated as lecturers and panelists in different parts of the event. Dr. Lavell spoke of the conceptual definition of risk, and the formulation of ideas, policies, and instruments and how they advanced in the region. Dr. Brenes led a panel on resilient finance.
In conclusion, the event served as a platform to interact with important stakeholders in the region who are also working in the area of DRR, which allowed strengthening existing cooperation ties, as well as establishing new ones in the region. It was announced that another event in October called understanding risks in a country in Central America still to be defined