Mexican businesses launch collaborative platform to improve disaster risk reduction

Source(s): Connecting Business initiative
Stormy sky above Mexico City

A coalition of Mexican businesses has launched a virtual platform to foster collaboration between the private sector, the Government, the UN and humanitarian partners in emergencies. The new platform, Unidos por Ellxs, will support private sector engagement in disaster risk reduction in Mexico.

The project, supported by the Connecting Business initiative (CBi), is implemented by CBi Member Network in Mexico, the National Center for Epidemiological Emergencies and Disasters (or Centro Nacional de Apoyo para Contingencias Epidemiologicas y Desastres, CENACED) in partnership with national authorities, the regional office of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) for Latin America and the Caribbean, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR) as well as humanitarian partners.

The platform aims at improving disaster resilience in Mexico, at a time when the country is affected by more frequent and severe emergencies. "It is no longer a question of whether or not a crisis will occur, but when it will be and whether we will be prepared for it," said Shelley Cheatham, Head of OCHA Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean. She was speaking at the platform launch event organized this week at the United Nations Headquarters in Mexico City by CENACED and partners and attended by over 100 people, including representatives from more than 50 corporations.

Dr. Roberto Delgado, the President of the Advisory Board of CENACED and President of the Foundation Cuervo, underlined that "68% of the population has been affected by a disaster, a figure that just coincides with the number of people living in poverty and extreme poverty in Mexico. This shows that vulnerable people are also among the most affected disasters."

The virtual platform will allow its members to access training and institutional strengthening activities; identify first-hand real needs at the local level from reliable sources; have direct contact with disaster management stakeholders; and ensure the transparency of resources donated for the construction of resilient societies, through effective accountability.

Iria González, Regional Coordinator of the Connecting Business Initiative (CBi) for Latin America and the Caribbean, mentioned that "disaster risk reduction and management are essential to achieve the sustainable development of communities," emphasizing the need to work "together, from the government, humanitarian, development, and private sector entities."

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