When communities receive clear consistent information that can be used to take action, people have the ability to make important potentially life-saving choices before, during and after a crisis. If they are also given a voice to share their insights, information, and feedback it is also possible for organisations that serve communities in crisis to adjust their strategies and more effectively use their resources.
Since 2018, Fiji has worked to build a Communication and Community Engagement (CCE) platform that embeds advanced two-way communication capabilities in the national disaster response system.
While it is common to think of “platforms” as a technology services, the intent here is much broader. While technology is an important component, today’s best-in-class national CCE “platforms” include a broad network of organisations that collaborate on communications efforts, resources such as guides and training that support efforts, and governance structures that support an integrated communication framework.
This is critical work. As a Pacific island nation, Fiji’s nearly 900,000 people are exposed to the ongoing threat of tropical cyclones and earthquakes. Amelia Makutu, CDAC’s senior national coordinator in Fiji, explains how it works.