MOBILISING DELSA RELIEF ITEMS
FOR COVID-19 RESPONSE
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to challenge ASEAN Member States, and the disaster management sector re-positions itself to determine where it can support ASEAN communities through the region’s current response and support mechanisms. The Governing Board of the AHA Centre held an online Special Meeting on May 15th, 2020, working through a range of options and ideas with AHA Centre management for a regional response and support to the pandemic situation.
The decision of the Special Meeting provides a number of specific Disaster Emergency Logistics System for ASEAN (DELSA) relief support items that can be accessed by ASEAN Member States (AMS) during the pandemic, to be requested by National Disaster Management Organisations (NDMOs) as an interim measure to fill operational gaps in their responses. The relief items made available as a result of this decision are Mobile Storage Units (MSU), Hygiene Kits and Prefabricated Offices (with AC) – that are kept in the DELSA stockpile and ready for deployment. Since this announcement, the support has been utilised by NDMOs from the Philippines, Malaysia and Cambodia.
Meanwhile, the AHA Centre – in collaboration with the Office of Civil Defence of the Philippines – has been providing support to the ongoing operations responding to the impact of COVID-19 in the Philippines. Efforts were undertaken from March until May, with teams working out of the new DELSA satellite warehouse at Camp General Aguinaldo, Quezon City. As part of the partnership, the AHA Centre has provided the warehouse space, as well as equipment such as forklifts to support the overall logistical operations. The AHA Centre also provided support with the delivery of a Mobile Storage Unit, that was procured with support from another AHA Centre partner – Direct Relief. The Mobile Storage Unit is currently located at the Supply Unit – Logistics Command, at Camp General Aguinaldo, and is being utilised by the Philippine’s Department of Health to store personal protective equipment and medical supplies.
The AHA Centre has also released 5,000 personal hygiene kits to the Philippines, procured with the support from Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF). One thousand of these hygiene kits have been mobilised to Legazpi City in Alabay, and 4,000 hygiene kits to Tacloban City in Leyte, to be distributed to different local government quarantine sites to support their COVID-19 response. On May 29 2020, the AHA Centre worked to support Malaysia’s NDMO (NADMA – Agensi Pengurusan Bencana Negara), providing one Mobile Storage Unit and one pre-fabricated office to support ongoing response work. The items were mobilised from the DELSA regional stockpile in Subang, Malaysia, and have been sent to Selangor, Malaysia, to support the coordination and management operations of a field hospital in the region. These relief items were also provided through the Japan-ASEAN Integration Fund (JAIF). As of early June, 2,900 Hygiene Kits and another Mobile Storage Unit were also set to be released from a DELSA satellite warehouse to support the pandemic response in Cambodia.
Written by : Ina Rachmawati | Photo Credit : AHA Centre