Early Warning System Project Launch in Dominica

Jul 20, 2015

UNDP Barbados and the OECS in collaboration with the Office of Disaster Management and supported by the European Commission Humanitarian Aid Department (ECHO) recently convened an inception workshop for the Strengthening Resilience and Coping Capacities in the Caribbean Through Integrated Early Warning Systems Project in Dominica.
Dominica was the first of the beneficiaries to convene this meeting with it being used to build country understanding of the internationally recognized Common Alerting Protocol (CAP) based Early Warning System (EWS) as well as provide an overview of the project through:

•    Presentation of the project outputs and implementation strategies
•    Presentation and finalization of the 2015/2016 Annual Work Plan
•    Outlining of technical requirements and agreements needed under the CAP based EWS
•    Identification of potential project synergies and opportunities for enhancing project impact and sustainability

The workshop further facilitated discussion on EWS related topics with relevant experiences of CAP based EWS in other Caribbean countries also being shared.  Site visits to Dublanc and Colihaut were incorporated as part of the visit culminating with a community meeting in Dublanc.
Numerous national organisations benefited from this meeting including the National Disaster Office, Red Cross Society, Community representative from beneficiary communities, Meteorological Service/airport authority, Fire, Police, Communication/Telecommunications and Broadcast services and representative from Project Teams implementing similar projects in country.

The immediate next steps of this project include conducted Vulnerability and Capacity Assessments (VCA) in collaboration with the Red Cross and more sensitization workshops in the community.  This project builds upon the Community Alerts Project, also funded by ECHO, which directly benefited Portsmouth Dominica in 2014.

Community members, Disaster Management personnel, Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology and UNDP Technical Coordinator observing river level based on past flooding
Photo displays some community vulnerabilities given possible storm surge and flooding from the river. Not shown, but immediately to the left is a house which would be at risk.
Community member points out height and path of river water based on last flooding
CIMH Hydrologist Shawn Boyce and National Disaster Coordinator Don Corriette, discussing possible locations for rain gauges and river level monitoring stations
CIMH Hydrologist Shawn Boyce recording coordinates for the locations of hazard monitoring equipment
Workshop participants discussing river network and community characteristics while on site visit

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