Earthquake Resiliency: Planting the seeds
In Bangladesh, a country prone to so many natural disasters like flood, hurricane, and erosion etc. earthquake is usually the last thing on people’s mind when they plan for disaster preparedness with their limited resources. But with the increase in seismic activities in the nearby regions, a growing importance is being given on creating community earthquake contingency plans in within a short time. This is a challenge since current communities in Bangladesh have no social memory of major earthquake incidents. Thus resilience building in this sector requires carefully coordinated planning.
This bring us to education, the first element required to create resilient communities. To ensure that people understand the threat their community faces, and bring out relevant local knowledge -the Participatory Vulnerability Assessment (PVA) is quite an efficient tool. This in one hand educates them about earthquake vulnerability and makes them aware about their degree of exposure, and on the other hand provides the planners with the information they need. These exercises can be more effective than documentaries or lectures as a mode of creating disaster awareness. Ultimately the information acquired could be used to make a preparedness plan for the area.
Confirmed SpeakerQazi Aniqua Zahra is an urban planning graduate from Bangladesh currently pursuing her Masters in the same field at Texas A&M University. She is an environment enthusiast with an interest in planning resilient communities. She did internships with reputed organizations like the Texas Transportation Institute (TTI) and United Nations Development Program (UNDP)-Bangladesh division, which helped her get a real experience of working with communities. During her time in Texas A&M she found interest in transportation as well and hopes to find a career where she can merge both - sustainable transportation or the effect of transportation on the environment. Aniqua is currently actively seeking full-time positions. She is definitely looking forward to her career as a professional planner!