The British Embassy Quito organised an informative event on Thursday 19 November for the British community in Guayaquil and surrounding areas at ECU-911 facilities
In light of the potential threat of the ‘El Niño’ phenomenon to Ecuador’s pacific coastline in 2015-16, the British Embassy in Quito organised an informative event and cocktail on 19 November 2015 for the British community to learn more about the potential impact of ‘El Niño’ directly from the Ecuadorean authorities responsible for crisis preparedness and response. The event was hosted at the ECU-911 emergency response facilities in Samborondón, and its aim was also to share with the British community information on the Foreign & Commonwealth Office´s consular policies and other consular services, along with an update on the latest innovative services available from ECU 911.
The event began with a presentation from the British Embassy, detailing their consular assistance policy, updates on how to report emergencies and the importance of staying informed through social networks. Information and guidance on the British Embassy’s role in a crisis situation was provided, in which British citizens were encouraged to be prepared and to plan ahead to cope with emergencies. Lastly it outlined useful information for the British community, such as passport renewals, changes to the process for birth and death registrations and marriage in Ecuador, among others. Participants were provided with useful information and materials from the Embassy and local authorities.
There followed a short demonstration of the Ecuadorean Red Cross’s innovative new smartphone application ‘Social Blood’, presented by Ing. Grace Jativa, the Red Cross’s Coordinator for Voluntary Blood Donation, and an explanation of how this new application is helping to coordinate blood donations for people with rare blood groups in Ecuador. Next Ing. Alexandra Rivadeneira, Consultant within the National Risk Control Agency’s department for Preparedness and Response to Adverse Events, gave an informative talk about the possible effects of ‘El Niño’ in 2015-16 and the measures being taken by the National Risk Control Agency to prepare for this. Lastly, Vice Admiral Jorge de la Torre, Regional Coordinator for ECU-911, gave a presentation on ECU-911’s integrated security system and latest smartphone application to report emergencies, after which the British community were invited to take part in a tour of the ECU 911 facilities.
The event concluded with a cocktail, giving the British community the opportunity to network and ask any further questions directly to consular staff and the local authorities. The Embassy in Quito was pleased with this opportunity to get to know better its community in Guayaquil and respond directly to their queries. The Embassy will continue building its close working relationship with the pioneering emergency response service ECU-911 and the other participating local authorities.