Masabaw an naging Pasko asin pagsabat sa Bagong Taon kan kadaklan niyatong mga kahimanwa mantang sa ibang parte kan Pilipinas, it is literally burning lalo na sa Davao City asin Manila. Pero dahil bago na ang taon, may naukudan lamang kaya kita sa mga naka-agi? How about in terms of disaster preparedness?
In my recent visit to Northern Cebu, many were shocked to hear the story of Bicolanos prioritizing the protection of their chili pepper plants than protecting their houses. Tamang-tama kaya na kan satuyang pagbisita, nagraragasa man an Bagyong Vinta.
It may be funny but the practice of protecting chili pepper plants during typhoons clearly show that disaster risk reduction management is already in the subconscious of the Bicolanos even before the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 or Republic Act No. 10121. Protecting the chili pepper plants before protecting the houses simply means knowing which to prioritize – a must in disaster preparedness.
Funny prioritization, one might say, but not necessarily wrong. Of course, it is expected if chili production is a family’s major economic activity. However, if it is only a plant or two for a household’s consumption, it really means something. First, aside from being a part of the regular Bicolano diet, chili peppers provide heat in the cold and rainy days especially post typhoons. Second, it shows confidence on the durability of the houses these Bicolanos have. Of course, it could also mean recognition of human limitations by protecting the easier ones first or else accomplish nothing but lose everything – another principle in disaster management. Continue reading “Disaster management and chili peppers”