November 3, 2012, Batticaloa, Sri Lanka. The Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Unit of the Batticaloa Municipal Council was ceremonially opened by Mr. Yoshinobu Fukasawa, Senior Human Settlement Officer of the UN-Habitat Regional Office for Asia Pacific recently. The DRR Unit is a key component of the project “Disaster Resilient City Development Strategies for Sri Lankan Cities” funded by the Government of Australia. The Hon Mayor of Batticaloa Mrs. Sivageetha Prabaharan, Municipal Commissioner, Mr.K.Sivanathan, and senior Government and local authority officers participated at the event.
The DRR unit will be responsible for the implementation of the Batticaloa Disaster Preparedness Plan. It will also supervise and monitor project implementation in consultation with the Technical Working Group established by the project. Raising community awareness and providing access to information on disaster resilient technologies and providing guidance on DRR procedures adapted by relevant institutions are key activities of the unit.
Batticaloa is the one of the four towns and cities being assisted by the Government of Australia funded Disaster Resilient City Development Strategies for Sri Lankan Cities Project. The project aims to establish sustainable disaster resilient and healthy cities and townships in disaster prone regions of Sri Lanka. The project is being implemented by UN-Habitat, in collaboration with the University of Moratuwa, Ministry of Disaster Management, Urban Development Authority and Local Authorities of the selected four cities.