Emergency Preparedness, Response: UNICEF, Others Train Stakeholders in Nasarawa

United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in collaboration with Nasarawa State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) and Nasarawa State Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASA) has trained 25 stakeholders in Nasarawa State on effective preparedness and response to emergency outbreaks.

Mr Michele Trainiti, UNICEF Emergency Specialist and Facilitator made this known at a “one-day Emergency Preparedness Training ” in Lafia on Thursday.

He said the training is aimed at preparing stakeholders involved in handling emergency outbreaks to be well prepared to handle future and unforseen emergencies so as to mitigate the impact of the emergencies on victims affected especially Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

“Part of what the participants have been taught is for them to understand the type of emergency that can occur, what is the population of the people in the place where the event happened, what are the needs of the people affected and how we want to respond to those needs.

“Once we have this picture of the situation, we need to reflect on what we should do to be properly prepared to respond to this type of events and this type of needs. We talked about the risk analysis which is what could happen.
We also discussed scenarios which is what would be the impact and the humanitarian needs.

“Also we talked about the key elements of the response which is what we would have to do to respond to the needs and preparedness actions. This is what we need to put in place before the emergency in order to be able to respond,” he said.

He said the training would equip participants with the capacity to efficiently handle emergency outbreak that could result in humanitarian disaster that mostly affects women and children if not well handled.

Mallam Usman Abubakar-Ahmed, Director of Relief and Operations, Nasarawa State Emergency Agency (SEMA), on his part, said 25 participants were carefully selected from relevant agencies and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) in the state and invited for the one day workshop to learn and brainstorm on effective ways of responding to emergencies in the state.

Abubakar-Ahmed who represented Barr. Zachary Alumaga, Executive Secretary of SEMA in the state at the training revealed that after the training, participants are expected to step down what they have learnt at the community level so as to enlighten those at the hinterlands on primary steps to take when faced with an emergency outbreak.

Mr Suleiman Onawo, one of the participants representing Nasarawa State Water Board said the training is apt as it has exposed them to proper ways of curtailing any emergency eventualities.

“Emergency outbreaks of different kinds happen all the time. This training has given us the awareness on how to be well prepared ahead of time. This workshop has given us light on how to prepare for any eventualities that may likely happen,” he said.

Miss Evarista Daniels, another participant with the Centre for Women, Youth and Community Action, an NGO in Nasarawa State said the training was timely as it will offered her organisation the knowledge and capacity on how and where to play a role in helping out once an emergency outbreak occurs.

“Emergency outbreaks are events that can happen at any time. So it is good we are aware so we can also get the communities informed on what can be done if such disasters occur.

“For example, the communal violence that recently took place leading to displacement of people is one of the emergencies we are talking about.

“So I am happy because we can transfer the information we have gotten to these communities so they can know how to mitigate the effect of these emergencies when they occur,” she said.

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