Yayasan Peta Bencana Engages with Local Community Volunteer Groups in Semarang

quote open    …The ease of reporting through PetaBencana.id will enable more efficient reporting, and allow us to respond more effectively to flood events. quote close

To continue building a growing network of active resident reporters and encourage effective sharing of disaster information in Semarang, Yayasan Peta Bencana is conducting workshops and outreach events with a range of communities active in the disaster management ecosystem in preparation for the upcoming monsoon season.

On August 10th, 2018, Yayasan Peta Bencana conducted a workshop with Semarang’s Regional Disaster Management Agency (BPBD Kota Semarang) network of volunteer communities. During disaster events, these independent community groups coordinate with BPBD Kota Semarang to aid in immediate first response efforts before the agency is able to deliver formal response. They also serve as key points of contact between the regional disaster management agency and the residents in their respective communities. These groups are active in raising disaster awareness within the local communities in which they are formed.

35 participants attended the workshop, representing a total of 18 different community volunteer groups, ranging from police volunteer groups, scout volunteer groups, first response volunteer groups, youth volunteer groups, village volunteer groups, disability volunteer groups, and regional search and rescue teams.

Yayasan Peta Bencana also held a workshop for BPBD Kota Semarang’s network of volunteers from the Kelurahan Siaga Bencana (Disaster Prepared Village) community group. In Semarang, each village is represented by a volunteer who acts as a first responder within that village in the event of a flood and also acts as the main point of contact between BPBD Kota Semarang and residents, responsible for reporting the on-the-ground situation. These volunteers are trained directly by BPBD Kota Semarang to manage disasters at the village level. As critical actors in Semarang’s disaster management ecosystem, it was great to be able to extend the socialization of the platform to this group, and share how PetaBencana.id could support more effective disaster reporting.

41 participants representing 39 different villages in Semarang, attended the workshop.

Over the course of both workshops, participants shared their inputs on the platform and on the use of crowd-sourced reporting for flood resilience. Participants raised questions about how the platform ensured the validity of crowd sourced reports, and responded positively when they learned the verification methods employed by PetaBencana.id. Participants expressed that the confirmed incidents of flooding displayed on PetaBencana.id would be useful to support evidence-based action and response. Participants expressed that the ease of reporting through PetaBencana.id would enable more efficient reporting, thereby facilitating volunteers in responding more effectively to flood events.

Excited by the prospects of utilizing crowd-sourced reports to support timely disaster management in the city, participants also expressed interest for the platform to address additional hazards.