QUEZON CITY (PIA) – The Philippine Information Agency (PIA) together with the Australian Awards through the Australian Broadcast Company (ABC) concludes the timely and relevant emergency broadcasting training program with the theme "Connecting Communities with Emergency Broadcasting."
During the closing ceremony held at the PIA Auditorium on May 23, 2023, participating agencies presented and discussed their Re-Entry Action Plans (REAP) that they implemented across their respective offices. The agencies that took part were Broadcast Communications Services (BCS), Freedom of Information-Program Management Office (FOI-PMO), Intercontinental Broadcasting Corporation (IBC), National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management of the Office of Civil Defense (NDRRMC-OCD), Philippine Broadcasting Service – Radyo Pilipinas (PBS), Philippine News Agency (PNA), People’s Television Network (PTV), and Radio Television Malacanang (RTVM).
Presidential Communications Office Assistant Secretary Patricia Martin also shared the office’s REAP which focused on creating a Unified Communications Group (UNICOMM) among different government agencies. The UNICOMM team aims to provide Filipinos with the same messaging and consistent information.
Meanwhile, the Philippine Information Agency’s REAP was presented by Venus Garcia. Recalibrating and assessment of PIA’s capability to provide information to the public is the core of the action plan of the agency which is possible through enhanced response mechanisms.
The training began in September 2022, participated by senior leaders, news reporters, and technical personnel from different government agencies. To further comprehend the importance of emergency broadcasts, in November of the same year, selected participants joined a benchmark study tour in Australia to gain a better understanding of the program and to jumpstart the conceptualization of action plans through the best practices of the Australian Government.
PIA Deputy Director General Karl Louie Fajardo congratulates all the participants for the success of this joint venture. He relates that this training program is relevant and timely after a posted threat of a “super typhoon” to the Philippines. He mentions that government agencies are already geared to emergency broadcasts.
For their part, Project Director Robert Batten and Lead Trainer and Mentor Andrew Fisher of the ABC-International Development (ABC-ID) also congratulate and appreciate the efforts of the participating government agencies to relay the main objective of emergency broadcasting which is saving lives by providing relevant information to the public during a crisis.
“Congratulations to all participants. I think you shall embrace leadership within organizations, embrace persistence to develop the plans and have the management approve, and lastly, you should embrace the commitment to the citizens in your country to undertake this training and to start to implement,” Batten added.
Australian Embassy in the Philippines Portfolio Manager (Scholarship and Innovation) Rollie dela Cruz and Australia Awards and Alumni Engagement Program - Philippines Program Director Milalin Javellana were also present during the closing ceremony.
The said training highlights the long-standing support of Australia to the Philippines in developing the country’s human resources, combating climate change, and building resilience. (MVMV, PIA-CPSD)