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British Ambassador attends launch of new disaster prevention tool

The British Ambassador to Guatemala, Mr. Thomas Carter, participated today in the launch of the Risk Management Index (INFORM).

Launching of INFORM
Launching of INFORM

INFORM was developed under the auspices of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the World Food Program (WFP), the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). For Guatemala, the study has been validated and approved by the National Coordinator for Disaster Reduction -CONRED-.

The Index evaluates the risk in the country’s 340 municipalities, considering their vulnerability and ability to respond to disasters, and includes environmental degradation, natural events, and violence, among other components. Some of the conclusions reveal that around 6 million people live in areas of high or very high risk, a figure that represents more than 50% of the national territory.

Following the presentation of the report its findings will be the disseminated to technicians of various state entities who will also be trained in its use. The United Nations and NGOs will also promote this methodology as a way of facilitating the decision-making process for risk management at a national level.

This work was made possible with the financial support of the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID), which, through UNICEF and the WFP, cooperated between 2015 and 2016 on a project worth US$18 million across several countries on prevention of disasters, training and joint work between authorities, civil society and communities at risk.

To mark the event, the British Ambassador for Guatemala, Thomas Carter, said:

It is a true honour to have contributed to the implementation of the INFORM platform in Guatemala. We ourselves are the first to recognise that obtaining information can be a challenge; and keeping it up-to-date is even harder, but all the data obtained can be very important for decision-making when it comes to protecting the population.

Published 7 June 2017