Community resilience refers to the sustained ability of a community to withstand and swiftly recover from natural or man-made disasters. Because it will never be possible to prevent all disasters, community resilience must become an important policy objective of all District Emergency Organisations across our island.
Because resources are limited in the wake of an emergency, it is increasingly recognized that resilience is critical to a community’s ability to shorten recovery periods after an emergency. Just as individual households have been encouraged to prepare for emergencies, communities are now being urged to become more resilient by developing community-level solutions that will help them cope and swiftly recover from disasters.
It is therefore recommended that disaster management officials comply with basic tenants of community resilience.
- Wellness of persons residing in the respective communities: Promote Population Health Before and After an Incident.
- Access: Ensure Access to High-Quality Health, Behavioral Health, and Social Resources and Services.
- Reasonable access to persons residing in the communities.
- The education and engagement of residents in the various communities.
- Ensure Ongoing Information to the Public About Preparedness, Risks, and Resources Before, During, and After a Disaster.
- Engagement should build the capacity of social, faith-based, and volunteer organizations to involve community members in collective action to address an issue or problem.
- Promote Participatory Decision making in Planning, Response, and Recovery Activities.
- Some level of self sufficiency in the event that the community is impacted.
- Enable and Support Individuals and Communities to Assume Responsibility for Their Preparedness.
- Leverage Existing Community Resources for Maximum Use and Effectiveness.
- Establishing meaningful partnerships with those agencies that can offer assistance.
- Develop Strong Partnerships Within and Between Government and Other Organizations.
- Training and sensitization to build the required capacity and efficiencies to cope if impacted.
- Continuous monitoring and evaluation.
- Collect, Analyze, and Utilize Data to Monitor and Evaluate Progress on Building Community Resilience.