International Strategy for Disaster Reduction
Latin America and the Caribbean   

UN Sasakawa Award on Disaster Reduction
Abouth Sasakawa Award for DR - Nippon Foundation - List Laureates - Conclusions booklet

Conclusion booklet
In recognition of innovative practices and outstanding initiatives in reducing the risks and vulnerabilities of communities to natural hazards
2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 2000
     
 

2003
Conclusion booklet

Message from the Inter-Agency Secretariat of the
International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR)

I am delighted that the Sasakawa Jury took the decision to select Mrs. Esther Tadzong as the 2003 UN Sasakawa Award laureate. This selection is particularly commendable as it promotes an African community-based experience, rewarding - for the first time in the Award's history - a woman from a developing country and a highly disaster-prone continent, recognizing her personal commitment and leadership in disaster reduction.

Coinciding with the Second International Conference on Early Warning, the 2003 UN Sasakawa Award Ceremony complemented the technical discussions of the meeting and highlighted the social aspects of disaster reduction such as community-based activities and values, as well as the importance of indigenous knowledge and experience within the community life. It also recognized the influence and central role of educational and training exercises to empower local communities and enhance their capacities in the face of natural hazards, thereby reducing their vulnerability.

I am pleased to see the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction develop as a valuable mechanism to promote good practices in disaster reduction, providing the opportunity to least developed communities and countries to be recognized for their efforts in building a safer world for all.

Sálvano Briceño
Director, UN/ISDR

Message from the Nippon Foundation

Thousands of years of exploration, observation, and scholarly studies have provided us with a sophisticated understanding of why natural phenomena occur, and although far from perfect, recent research and technological developments have better equipped us with ways to reduce natural hazards and the impact of disasters. However, despite such developments, the world continues to experience dramatic human suffering and loss of life due to natural hazards and related disasters. And there is a staggering difference in damage and casualties between those regions that are prepared and those that are not.

Disasters can strike anywhere at anytime. Therefore, it is imperative that we empower even the most remote communities with greater disaster prevention capacity by improving access to the latest information and technologies. The United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction recognizes individuals or institutions that have made outstanding contributions in the field of disaster prevention, not only to reward their accomplishments, but also to raise awareness of successful cases of disaster prevention. It is our sincere hope that the rest of the world will learn from their successes, and that this will lead to the creation of a truly global culture of disaster prevention.

Mr. Shuichi Ohno, Director, Department of International Affairs
Nippon Foundation

     
     
(223Kb)   2002
Conclusion booklet




Message from the Inter-Agency Secretariat of the
International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN/ISDR)

The growing number and quality of nominations for the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction clearly indicates the increasing profile of disaster reduction among the international community. Each year new and innovative initiatives are brought to the spotlight by way of the Award, providing a valuable opportunity for the sharing of experiences and best practices, as well as encouraging governments, organizations, community groups and individuals to reaffirm their commitment to and continue their engagement in reducing risk and vulnerability to natural disasters.

Given the high standard of nominations received, each year brings a greater challenge for the UN Sasakawa Jury to agree upon the Laureate and recipients of Certificates of Distinction and Merit. UN/ISDR warmly welcomes all UN Sasakawa awardees and nominees into its broad network of experts and practitioners to contribute to its mission of building disaster resilient communities, by highlighting the importance of disaster reduction as an integral component of sustainable development.

Sálvano Briceño
Director, UN/ISDR

 

Message from the Nippon Foundation

2002 marks the fifteenth anniversary of the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction. Over the years the Nippon Foundation has been proud to contribute to the recognition of disaster reduction efforts worldwide, continuing its close partnership with the Inter-Agency Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction in promoting the global shift to a culture of prevention. While in some cases we are unable to prevent natural hazards from taking place, experience teaches us that there is much to be done to minimise their negative impacts on communities.

On behalf of the Nippon Foundation, I extend my sincere congratulations to the Laureate and Certificate recipients of the 2002 UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction.

Shuichi Ohno
Director, Department of International Affairs
Nippon Foundation

     
     
(1.82Mb)  

2001
Conclusion booklet


Foreword from the Director ISDR

Global warming and related climate change, growing population, urban development and subsequent anarchic land-use management as well as unsustainable development practices represent exacerbating factors to the vulnerability of modern societies to natural hazards. Natural hazards and related environmental and technological disasters affect developing and industrialized countries alike, endangering dramatically their sustainable economic development by redirecting financial resources, originally dedicated to development, towards relief assistance activities in the aftermaths of a disaster. It is therefore essential to promote any activity aimed at reducing natural hazards and the impact of disasters on the most vulnerable communities in a cost-effective manner.

We have the moral imperative to create a culture of prevention, so as to promote an equal access to disaster prevention technologies and to reduce the vulnerability of human beings at risk from disasters. The United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction represents an important tool for awareness raising, as well as a key vehicle for the dissemination of the disaster reduction message, in particular to the most remote communities. It gives appropriate recognition to local efforts as well as to traditional and indigenous knowledge and achievements, thereby contributing to the identification of the most successful and innovative practices in disaster reduction worldwide. The Award represents a central element of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN-ISDR) and deserves increased visibility at the international level, so as to contribute to the empowerment and full commitment of communities at risk from natural hazards and related environmental and technological disasters as well as to building a safer world for all in the twenty-first century.

Sálvano Briceño
Director, UN/ISDR

 

Message from the Director for International Relations
of the Nippon Foundation

2001 marks the fourteenth year since the creation of the United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction and it is a sincere pleasure for the Nippon Foundation to note the tremendous accomplishments made so far in making of the Earth a safer place to live for all. Every new technology and innovative approach in disaster reduction identified through the United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction is a step forward in reducing risk and protecting vulnerable communities from the devastating impact of natural disasters. A long way has been made since the first United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction process, and the Nippon Foundation looks forward to continuing sponsoring this major international fruitful event to enhance world people to pursue their role as the central actors in developing a global culture of prevention.

Tatsuya Tanami

     
     
(2.79Mb)  

2000
Conclusion booklet


Foreword by the Director a.i. of the United Nations
International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR)


The devastation and human suffering caused by natural hazards and related environmental and technological disasters within recent years pose a major stet for national governments and the international community as a whole. The past decade has witnessed an exponential growth in the occurrence of disasters, which do not discriminate between developing and developed countries. The forest fires which raged in the United States and the Mediterranean region during 2000, the devastations caused by floods in several parts of Europe, Asia and the Americas, as well as the recent earthquakes in El Salvador and in India are painful reminders of the increasing vulnerability of both developed and developing countries to natural hazards and related environmental and technological disasters.

It was in recognition of the challenges posed by such disasters that the United Nations General Assembly endorsed the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR) and established the Inter-Agency Secretariat of the ISDR, together with the Inter Agency Task Force for Disaster Reduction, as major instruments for the implementation of the Strategy. One of the central functions of the Secretariat is to promote worldwide awareness of the importance of pursuing a strategy of disaster reduction based on the adoption of measures designed to reduce vulnerability. The ultimate objective of these efforts is to build disaster resilient societies in order to reduce human, economic and social losses.

The United Nations Sasakawa Award, which is sponsored by the Nippon Foundation, has hade an important contribution since 1986 by recognizing individuals and institutions which have promoted innovative initiatives in disaster reduction in various parts of the world. The ISDR Secretariat is therefore pleased to cooperate with the Nippon Foundation in this important endeavour of building a safer world in the 21st century.

Denis M. Benn

 

Message from the Executive Director of the Nippon Foundation

It was my great pleasure to attend the award ceremony of the United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction 2000 as Executive Director of the Nippon Foundation. The Nippon Foundation is a private, non-profit organization founded in 1962, and it received 3.3% of its revenues from motorboat racing in Japan. Committed to philanthropic activities, the Foundation supports both domestic and international projects oriented toward the alleviation of human suffering, the advancement of human welfare, and the promotion of world peace.

The Nippon Foundation has donated more than 200 million US dollars to the United Nations since its establishment. Of this aid, the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction, operated by the ISDR, is one of our most successful accomplishment.

Although, we, human beings, feel powerless and tiny when faced with the power of nature, this does not mean that there is nothing we can do to prevent the damage caused by natural disasters, and that we should merely endure suffering. In recent years, we have advanced technologically, abling ourselves to reduce the damage, and more importantly, we have developed superior knowledge and the ability to come up with wonderful ideas that can contribute to building communities which are more disaster resilient. The Nippon Foundation hopes that the knowledge base built, as recipients of the UN Sasakawa Award for Disaster Reduction share their experiences with the world, will go a long way toward protecting our society.

Mr. Reizo Utagawa

     
 
  © UN/ISDR