13 September 2013, Geneva, Switzerland - In recent years, different parts of the world have experienced an increased impact of natural disasters – from earthquakes in Haiti (2010) to the nuclear disasters in Fukushima, Japan (2011). Latin American countries are no exception, and have been exposed to a multitude of natural hazards, including earthquakes, floods, volcanoes and drought. In this context, there is a need for stronger disaster management. Through improved disaster management, communities can build resilience to natural disasters that persistently threaten human safety and security.

UNITAR’s Decentralized Cooperation Programme (DCP) is working to enhance decision makers’ capacities in disaster risk management, prevention, mitigation, and resilience in the Latin American region. 

As a first training initiative in the region, DCP hosted with UNISDR, CAF (Development Bank of Latin America) and Chile’s Ministry of Housing and Urban Planning, the International Forum “Enhancing resilience to disasters in Latin America”. The forum, held in Santiago de Chile on the 27-29 of August provided an international platform to exchange knowledge and best practices on disaster risk reduction (DRR) and resilience of cities. We had experts in DRR from Japan, Chile, Mexico, Peru, Brazil, Argentina and Ecuador, among others. Additionally, 48 government officials from Latin American countries attended along with local participants. With the support of one of our training centres, CIFAL Merida, the forum was live streamed through the 3 days of sessions. We invite you to watch the deliberations at www.cifalmerida.tv

CIFAL workshop in Chile