The Bahamas, through the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, is being represented at the 11th Caribbean Conference on Comprehensive Disaster Management in Sint Maarten under the theme “The Road to Resilience Checkpoint 2019 – Safeguarding Our Communities, Livelihoods and Economies”. The Bahamas’ delegation is being led by Minister of State for Disaster Preparedness, Management and Reconstruction the Hon Iram Lewis. He is accompanied by Captain Stephen Russell, Director, NEMA; Carl Smith, Permanent Secretary; Gayle Outten-Moncur, Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary, NEMA; Lavelle Watson, NEMA; and Rolner Paul, an evacuee from Abaco and student of Queen’s College, who participated in the Youth Forum.
Minister Lewis participated in a Ministerial High Level Discussion on: “Safeguarding communities, livelihoods and economies on the road to recovery”. NEMA’s participation in CDM 11 comes on the heels of the passage of Hurricane Dorian through North Abaco and Cays and East Grand Bahama, leaving at least 70 people dead, hundreds in shelters, and massive destruction. Since the hosting of the first conference in 2006, the event has gained recognition as the flagship event on the CDEMA Calendar & the premier Disaster Risk Management forum with in the Caribbean region.
The conference has showcased best practices emerging from CDEMA’s 18 Participating States, of which The Bahamas is a member. The conference has emerged as a platform for the engagement of political leaders, physical planners,meteorologists, climate change stakeholders, researchers, educators, and public and private financial experts as well as facilitated inter-stakeholder exchanges/networking and “birthing” of new policy ideas.
This year’s conference is from December 2-6. The objectives of CDM11 are to:
Highlight the progress in achieving Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM) Strategy Results 2014-2024.
Showcase opportunities for protecting livelihoods and economies within various communities.
Promote youth empowerment in safeguarding our communities, livelihoods and economies.
Identify lessons from past events and opportunities to inform future resilience.
Facilitate exchanges and knowledge sharing on CDM related research, tools, models, products, information and educational materials.
Promote understanding of the Resilience Framework adopted by CARICOM Heads of Government.
Promote the goals of and build commitment for Comprehensive Disaster Management (CDM)