PBSM NBD Slideshow

Rabu, 3 Mac 2010

Aid agencies urged to boost capabilities

By Azlan Othman and Amie PDH Ishak

Hj Abd Malik, personal representative of Dato Paduka Hj Jemat bin Hj Ampal, reading his text of speech.

Delegates pose for a group photo at the opening ceremony of the Southeast Asia Organisational Development (OD) Forum 2010. - PHOTOS: AZLAN OTHMAN

"Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies are very committed to serving through volunteering, humanitarian aid, relief and support and disaster management. We cannot run away from disasters, which can be either natural or man-made disaster. Developing countries are hit hardest by natural disasters. But as national societies, you can help to alleviate the trauma and suffering of the victims.

"The tsunami in Aceh, Indonesia and earthquake in Indonesia and the recent earthquake in Haiti and two days ago the devastating earthquake in Chile, all require disaster management - humanitarian relief and support by local and International Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies."

This was stated by Hj Abd Malik Hj Muhammad on behalf of Dato Paduka Hj Jemat bin Hj Ampal, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, at the opening ceremony of the Southeast Asia Organisational Development (OD) Forum 2010 held at LR ASMA Hotel in Jerudong.

"In Brunei, there is a national level working committee known as the National Disaster Management Committee (NDMC) and the Brunei Darussalam Red Crescent Society was one of the NGOs providing volunteer services with other health professionals at the quarantine centre during the recent H1N1 outbreak.

"I hope this forum will provide an opportunity for each National Society, especially Brunei Darussalam Red Crescent, to share their diverse experiences, perspectives and knowledge not only on the issues discussed but also for the enhancement of every organisation.

"We look forward to the many deliberations towards the further strengthening of more strategic organisational development capabilities, resulting in better-organised and well-coordinated national societies with strengthened capabilities in communication, coordination and sharing of information and expertise among national societies inter and intra regionally.

"This year's Organisational Development Forum has been given the theme 'Strategy 2020: Saving Lives, Changing Minds', and this year's forum will be focussing on three major areas of group discussions, namely, Humanitarian Diplomacy, Volunteering and HQ/Branch Relationship and Decentralisation. These are very important issues for strategic development of national societies with well-developed and pro-active human resource or manpower required for saving lives in times of catastrophe and at the same time practising humanitarian diplomacy with crucial commitment to uphold the seven fundamental principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movements of Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary, Unity and Universality.

"Volunteers, in particular youth members are a great asset to any NGOs (Non-Government Organisations). In order to maximise their contribution, particularly in times of disaster or catastrophe, it is crucial that national societies have very well-structured training programmes in volunteering," he said.

The two-day forum brings together participants from 14 Red Cross/Red Crescent Societies, namely, from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Sweden, Timor Leste, Thailand, IFRC (International Federation Red Cross/Red Crescent) Bangkok Regional Office and the International Committee of the Cross (ICRC).

"The forum will provide an opportunity for each of us from our respective country and national society to share our diverse experiences, perspectives and knowledge about issues to be discussed at this forum. For us, it is definitely an added value to our organisational development strategic planning and for future directions of the Brunei Darussalam Red Crescent Society," said Hj Julaini Latip, Chairman of the Organisational Development Forum 2010. The forum is an annual event and this is the first time that Brunei Darussalam is the host country.

--Borneo Bulletin

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