PDRF, UNDP forge partnership for stronger disaster recovery and resilience programs

October 25, 2022

L-R: Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation President Mr. Rene “Butch” Meily, UNDP Philippines Resident Representative Dr. Selva Ramachandran, and UN Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Regional Director for Asia Pacific Ms. Kanni Wignaraja


Manila, Philippines – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in the Philippines has partnered with the Philippines’ major private sector vehicle and coordinator for disaster resilience, the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), in advancing the efforts in early recovery and long-term resilience from disasters in crisis-hit areas in the country.

Through the partnership, UNDP Philippines and PDRF aim to strengthen the cooperation mechanism between the government, civil society organizations, and the business communities by complementing efforts and leveraging on available resources that will help develop durable and innovative solutions in reducing risks, recovering fast, and building long-term resilience in communities most vulnerable to climate-related disasters.

“We hope to double our efforts in developing program responses for resilient livelihoods to help the communities recover from the impacts of disasters. We would like to help the local economy continue to thrive despite the recurring losses and damages,” said UNDP Resident Representative Selva Ramachandran.

Last September, the World Risk Index 2022 ranked the Philippines first among 193 countries in the world in terms of risk. The response and recovery from the recent typhoons have become more challenging and complicated due to the pandemic. While the government has continuously strengthened its disaster risk and reduction programs and policies, Filipino communities can greatly benefit from the contribution and resources of the private sector.

“The ability to deal with multiple crisis at the same time, such as the pandemic and a storm or an earthquake, underscores how important it is for groups like PDRF and UNDP to work together. We continue to provide assistance even months and years after a disaster has struck in order to ensure that normalcy will be restored. If we want to build a safer and more resilient planet, it must begin with us,” highlighted by PDRF President Rene “Butch” Meily.

The partnership signing was witnessed by Kanni Wignaraja, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Regional Director for Asia Pacific. She recognized the partnership as one of the milestones in UNDP’s recovery and resilience work in the Philippines, as it contributes to increasing readiness and diversifying the livelihood opportunities of affected communities.

UNDP Philippines and PDRF have been working together through the Connecting Business Initiative (CBI), a joint global initiative of UNDP and UN OCHA that targets to become a go-to hub for business networks involved in disaster management. PDRF is the only Philippine member of the CBI. To date, CBI Member Networks have responded to more than 100 crises, mobilized US $84 million, and assisted approximately 18 million people globally.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, UNDP Philippines and PDRF worked together in developing an integrated business plan for private sector engagement in recovery efforts. Through the Synergizing Recovery Initiatives, Knowledge, and Adaptation Practices (SIKAP), a one-stop resilience hub accessible to all micro, small, and medium enterprises in the Philippines was developed. The platform provided MSMEs the access to digital tools and expertise to help build their capacities to recover from a crisis.

In response to the super typhoon Odette last December 2021, UNDP Philippines collaborated with PDRF for livelihood recovery and in building long-term resilience of affected communities, especially in the most hard-hit areas of Dinagat Islands Province and Siargao Island. ###