SM Cares, the corporate social responsibility arm of SM Prime Holdings, Inc., will be conducting the 5th Emergency Preparedness Forum, in its continuing thrust to make persons with disabilities (PWDs) and senior citizens more resilient and better prepared in times of disasters. From what was an annual event held in a single venue, SM Cares now brings the forum across five SM malls nationwide from June 21 to July 12, 2019, in observance of the National Disaster Resilience Month.
Participating malls include SM City Clark (June 21), SM City Marikina (July 2), SM City Dasmariñas (July 5), SM City Batangas (July 9), and SM Center Muntinlupa (July 12), all happening from 10 AM to 12 Noon.
Facilitating the forum are DOST Undersecretary, PHIVOLCS director, and leading expert in geology and seismology, Dr. Renato Solidum Jr., joined by Dr. Ted Esguerra, who is an active member of numerous emergency preparedness and disaster response units around the globe. Both highly-regarded experts will impart knowledge about natural disasters and how to properly respond to them.
“We believe that there is a strong need to reach out to the communities that include persons with disabilities. They may either be out of reach from proper information, or they may have misconceptions on how to react to emergencies. And we are very fortunate to have Dr. Solidum and Dr. Esguerra, to help us understand and develop a more disaster-resilient way of living for PWDs,” said Bien Mateo, SM Cares program director for persons with disabilities.
“For our elderly, we have our undeniable limitations such as mobility and sensory capacities. They may know that there is an emergency, but are unable to act upon it. We want to enlighten them that there are responses that they can do that best fits their situation. This is one way we want to strengthen the communities of our senior citizens,” added Danilo Chavez, SM Cares program director for senior citizens.
The project is in line with the United Nations Sustainable Goal No. 11: to make cities and human settlements sustainable. It is projected that by 2050, 70% of the world’s population will be living in cities, making sustainability a critical priority. SM, together with national government agencies and community members, are collectively engaged in pursuing objectives to make cities safer, resource-efficient, resilient and inclusive.
SM continues to promote a barrier-free and disability-inclusive environment to ensure that SM becomes a place for all, and where everyone is cared for. More than these sectors of the community, this series of events also encourages everyone to make emergency preparedness more than just a vital piece of knowledge, but a way of life.
SM Cares is the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of SM Prime Holdings, Inc. Its advocacies include Environment Sustainability, Programs on Persons with Disabilities, Children and Youth, Women and Breastfeeding Mothers, Senior Citizens, and Overseas Filipino Workers (SM Global Pinoy).