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    DOST strengthens reg’l implementation of Project #MAGHANDA

    CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (PIA)–The Department of Science and Technology (DOST) is now intensifying the regional conduct of its project dubbed Meteorological and Geological Hazard Advisories, Warnings, and Notifications for Decisive Action (#MAGHANDA).

    Through its Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAG-ASA), a virtual re-orientation involving relevant partner line agencies was spearheaded Thursday, September 13.

    In the event, PAG-ASA International Science Relations Officer Bernard Punzalan II bared that major line agencies, such as the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), DOST, PAG-ASA, Office of the Civil Defense (OCD), and the Philippine Information Agency, bear institutional roles before, during and after the implementation of their project.

    He stressed that even in constructing the ways forward, such agencies still have critical roles to play.

    Punzalan also presented the suggested coordination strategies to garner more media participants.

    Some of these were advising the regional PIA and Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) to link with the DOST and the PAG-ASA, endorsing regional DOST and PAG-ASA contact persons to assist in the coordination with media practitioners in all the regions, and providing directories of PIA and KBP contact persons.

    Meanwhile, PAG-ASA Information Officer Fatima Gay Molina reintroduced the project as an initiative of the DOST that serves as a refresher on the updated hazard information and corresponding warning messages.

    She underscored that this aims to provide a clearer understanding of warning messages on natural hazards to have better response action among local government units (LGUs) and media.

    To make this possible, Molina said they intend to conduct a seminar-workshop for about 7,549 participants coming from the 17 regions in the country.

    Target participants include local chief executives (governors and mayors), public information officers (PIOs), local government operations officers (LGOO), responders from the LGUs’ Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (DRRMO), and the media.

    Molina further detailed that Project #MAGHANDA is led by PAG-ASA’s Dr. Vicente Malano alongside their institutional partners, to wit, Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS), Science and Technology Information Institute (STII), Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development (PCIEERD), and DILG.

    Accordingly, this is funded by the DOST’s Grants-In-Aid (GIA) Program in the amount of P25,915,956.00 so that it can run from July 15, 2021 to December 31, 2022. (CRG/PIA-10/Cagayan de Oro City)

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