UN Sasakawa Award short-list announced

Source(s): United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction

GENEVA, 6 May 2013 - The Philippines and Sweden have two projects each short-listed for the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Risk Reduction which will be presented in Geneva on May 22 during the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction. Projects from Bangladesh and Brazil have also been short-listed by the judging panel which reviewed 28 projects from 20 countries.

For the Philippines, SM Holdings, a shopping mall developer, has been nominated for its disaster management capability in hazard-prone locations, and the Municipality of St. Bernard, Leyte Province, is nominated for an early warning system developed after 1,354 people lost their lives there in a land-slide.

Karlstadt Municipality in Sweden, a city of 86,000 people, is nominated for its innovative use of social media to raise awareness, particularly of flood threats. The city website even offers 'flood risk walks.' The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB) is nominated for the impact of its disaster risk reduction tools on local government decision-making.

Bangladesh received a nomination for the National Alliance for Risk Reduction and Response Initiatives (NARRI), a consortium of ten international NGOs which works closely with the Bangladesh government and emphasizes risk-mapping at community-level.

Belo Horizonte, the capital of Brazil's Minas Gerais State, is nominated for fostering cooperation between local residents, public utility companies and private businesses for regular inspections of the city's 80 potential flood zone and landslide risk areas.

Nippon Foundation Chairman, Yohei Sasakawa, will present the award at a ceremony hosted by the Senegalese singer, Ismael Lo, also known as the "African Bob Dylan". "Acting As One" is the theme of this year's Awards. Some 3,000 people are registered to attend the three-day Global Platform, May 21-23. The $50,000 award will be decided by an independent jury of four experts from Asia, the America, Africa and Europe.

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