UP's disaster preparedness class becoming more popular
MANILA, Philippines – We don't need superheroes to save people in need during disasters. With the right tools and the right information, everyone can be their own hero.
This is the message of a group of University of the Philippines - Diliman students who made a video to teach their fellow students about disaster mitigation and preparedness.
The video, titled 'Superhero', was conceptualized and produced by Michael Azul, Maeryl Lagumbay, Jhubyel dela Cruz, Rose Quiocho, and Benjamin Mirasol as part of a special class project on disaster preparedness.
Mirasol said they wanted to encourage the public to take responsiblity for their personal safety and their family's safety when disaster strikes.
The video's key message is that everyone can save lives and be a hero by remembering the acronym "L.I.F.E." which stands for: location information, inventory supplies, follow warning and instructions, and evacuation plan.
WATCH the video here:
"The video is meant to resemble viral videos wherein out of nowhere a super hero comes in who tries to save people. But then he can't save them with his super powers. He will be able to save them using the tools we gave them," Mirasol explained.
Location information refers to knowing the hazard liabilities present in one's house, workplace, school, etc. The video emphasized the importance of locating the nearest emergency centers and safety shelters.
The video also reminds everyone to prepare an emergency kit for disasters.
Don't know what to put in a disaster kit? Here's a checklist to help you.
It is also crucial that people affected by disasters should follow instructions released by the concerned government agencies. The video also encouraged people to develop an evacuation plan for their family that can be immediately employed in times of disasters.
Disaster preparation course
Typhoon Yolanda and other recent calamities highlighted the lack of youth awareness on thier roles in disaster preparedness and response. (Read: Young Yolanda survivors: we don't just want money and gifts)
But at the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City, resilience education is a part of the curriculum.
Civil Engineering 10 is a class on disaster mitigation, adaptation, and preparedness strategies for UP students. It was first taught during the 1st semester of school year 2013-2014. The class is managed by a team of 6 teachers from different academic fields.
According to Professor Benny Pacheco, the class was a result of the Biodiversity and Resilience Project of the Commission on Higher Education. As part of the class' culminating activity this semester, the class was asked to come up with a video on the lessons they learned in class.
"The course is a good blend of science and technology, psychology, social science and humanities," Pacheco said.
The class has proved very popular among students. Demand for the class in the 2nd semester exceeded the 120 slots offered.
According to Pacheco, the fact that the country is a hotspot for typhoon, earthquakes, and other natural calamities may be a factor of its popularity.
Another factor would be in the innovative way it is being taught.
"We employ team teaching where all teachers are present at the same time – whether in class or in preparatory meetings. This is not like in relay teaching where when one finishes his part, he totally disappears and another takes the class," Pacheco said.
Pacheco said that plans for expansion are already underway. Aside from adding classes, the team of teachers is also discussing with the UP Open University the possibility of creating a fully online version of the class.
If their discussion with CHED goes well, Pacheco added the course might also be developed as a standard general education course in all state colleges and universities. - Rappler.com