Following the first Management of the Dead and Missing (MDM) sensitization session in Tacloban in October 2017, the Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services (IDEALS Inc.) held another session in Quezon City on 29th and 30th January 2018.

Search, Rescue and Retrieval Groups (SRR) and Civil Society Organizations were the target of the sensitization activity.12 SRR groups from different Local Government Units in Metro Manila and the National Capital Region, 6 Civil Society Organizations, representatives of the Department of Education and the Metro Manila Development Authority participated.

Diosdado “Dong” Waña, Humanitarian Leadership Academy Philippines Center Director said:

“The Academy is pleased to take part in pushing the MDM agenda forward. With capacity building for humanitarians at the core of its mission, the Academy looks forward to working with IDEALS, DILG and other institutions that have the serious intent and commitment to continuously build capacity on MDM. In the future, we can work together to develop contextualized and standardized MDM training packages for different audiences. We can then convert these training packages into e-learning modules and make these accessible and available to anyone online through our online learning platform Kaya. By doing so, everybody will have access to relevant MDM capacity building anywhere and at much lesser cost.

Topics covered included Search, Rescue and Retrieval, Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) and management of the bereaved families and more. The legal background of DVI was also discussed and how important it is for the bereaved families to be equipped on what to do, in case of presumptive death for their missing family members during a disaster.

Project VITALS (Disaster Victim Identification through Training and Learning Support) is an initiative by Initiatives for Dialogue and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services (IDEALS) supported by the Humanitarian Leadership Academy Philippine Center.

As part of the project, IDEALS will also be producing and printing the Volume 2 of the Access to Benefits and Claims After Disasters (ABCD) primer as well as an infographic on MDM which will be shared on Kaya.

Mark Cervantes
Program Manager, Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience
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