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Strengthening coordination for disaster response in the Caribbean region


Strengthening coordination for disaster response in the Caribbean region

On Tuesday July 19, the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) will be hosting, at its Tacarigua office, a two day meeting to treat with strengthening coordination for disaster response in the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) sub regional focal point system. At this meeting, national disaster coordinators from the disaster management offices and permanent secretaries of the southern sub regional focal point areas of Guyana, Suriname and Grenada along with the Executive Director and senior technical officers will be present to identify the areas that the sub regional focal points can be strengthened and improved.

Over the two day period, participants are expected to examine the role and functions of the CDEMA Sub Regional Focal Points; identify existing gaps in response capacity of the Sub Regional Focal Points; examine opportunities for strengthening of the Sub Regional Focal Points; Examine areas for the sharing of experiences within the sub regions and explore a redundant Sub Regional Focal Point mechanism for the sub region.

Once all objectives have been met, participants should be able to report on capacity needs analysis at the regional level; have an improved awareness and orientation of members to existing plans, memoranda of understanding and expertise of the region and ensure that redundancy is built in the Sub Regional Focal Point for the sub region.

Before the meeting commences, remarks will be given by Andria Grosvenor, Technical Manager – Preparedness and Country Support, CDEMA; Jeremy Collymore, Executive Director, CDEMA; Jennifer Boucaud-Blake, Permanent Secretary Ministry of National Security, Trinidad and Tobago and Dr Stephen Ramroop, Chief Executive Officer, ODPM.

The media is invited to cover the opening aspect which begins at 9:00 a.m at the ODPM office- 4A Orange Grove Road, Tacarigua. We kindly ask that you arrive by 8:45 a.m. to set up.


Issued by:

Public Information, Education and Community Outreach Unit

About the Sub Regional Focal Points:

To better manage an efficient response, the 16 participating states of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) are grouped into four sub-regions, each of which is headed by an operation unit known as a Sub-Regional Focal Point. The functions of each focal point are:

  • Acquire and maintain on an updated basis comprehensive information on the facilities and services available in each of the Participating States for which they bear responsibility;
  • Maintain and test on regular basis communications with the Coordinating Unit and with critical response agencies under the control of national relief organizations;
  • Maintain independent fuel and power supplies and ensure that relevant physical facilities are in a condition to withstand a major disaster;
  • Keep and maintain at the operational focal point in serviceable and optimal working condition an equipment package containing essential items determined by the Board of Directors, subject to the approval of Council.

Trinidad and Tobago is the Sub Regional Focal Point (SRFP) for Grenada, Guyana and Suriname. Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados and Jamaica are the other front line countries which will response to any of the other 12 member states after a major hazard impact or disaster. 

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