Saturday, March 9, 2013

Mangrove Forest Planning

On the request of a noted non-profit organization, CKS has planned to take up mapping of prospective areas where mangrove can be planted in the most vulnerable blocks of Sunderbans. As a prelude to this,  a model map has been created for one panchayat- Satjelia island in Gosaba block of South 24 Parganas district in West Bengal, India. We have identified 109 plots accumulating to about 123 acres of land.

Interested NGOS and INGOs may contact CKS for support in this regards and for similar area based planning. For viewing we have placed only the plot identification number without mentioning the area of each plot separately as the data will have to go through the final verification process from our field team.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Training the NDRF

On 3 March National Disaster Response Force (NDRF)' second Battalion organized a workshop for about 225 soldiers who are usually involved in Disaster Response in the country, and at times, if need arises internationally. The program was inaugurated by Director General of NDRF Mr. P.M. Nair. Mrs. Kavita Singh, a professor from the National University of Juridical Sciences spoke on the legal framework for protection of women and she exhorted the soldiers to be sensitive towards the rights of women. A drama group from the city through various interactive activities focused on team effort and motivation. I had the privilege of interacting with the soldiers on Gender Needs in Emergencies - with focus on Evacuation, Search & Rescue and Camp Management. Since NDRF is involved in those activities in emergencies, the brief presentation, two short videos, couple of case stories and the discussion points were highly appreciated and found to be useful. 

Since this was my first external major program after the accident on 5 Feb, I was delighted that I could manage the session better than I thought I might end up with, as the training was in Hindi. Ms. Megan and Ms. Kaytlyn, two students from Seattle University also joined the program as observers. We thank the Commandant of the 2nd Battalion Mr. Sukhdev Raj and the Deputy Commandant Mr. Mukesh Verma for organizing such wonderful program for the whole day for the soldiers who can make a difference between life and death in times of disasters.