SPARK! believes that emergency preparedness planning should incorporate solar power into integrated emergency, environment awareness and resilience strategies for effective implementation with local initiatives taking the lead to ensure sustainability. Moreover, particular groups such as women and children should be given attention due to their specific vulnerabilities. It is in this rationale that SPARK!’s core program also centers on the creation of an empowered community prepared, alert and equipped in disasters. Earlier this year, SPARK! conducted a series of trauma healing and community reconciliation projects to support relief and rehabilitation efforts in the Haiyan-affected communities.

SPARK! recognizes however that there are other areas that have not been in the news but have suffered greatly due to past disasters and also are struggling because of other weaknesses and emergencies. After consultations with key officials, SPARK! distributed the Waka Waka lights to the Municipality of Ayungon and the cities of Bais and Dumaguete. In partnership with local government units, the Waka Waka solar lights are made available to far-flung barangay outposts, to particularly vulnerable areas to disasters and power outages or even in areas without electricity in order to meet critical power needs especially during emergency operations. SPARK supports decentralized disaster risk reduction and management planning where local government units in cooperation with NGOs and the private sector. Solar power, like the Waka Waka lights can offer a source of clean, flexible, reliable, pollution-free power.

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Representative George Arnaiz and Mayor Chiquiting Sagarbarria receives the Waka waka solar lights from Spark Philippines with support from Apl.de.Ap Foundation to be used for the barangay halls and communities without electricity due to past damage brought about by typhoons. There will be a conscious effort to strategically place the solar-powered lights where it can serve especially women and children.

Spark Philippines with support from Apl.de.Ap Foundation turns over Waka Waka Solar Lights to Mayor Mercy T. Goñi to be used for the health centers of Bais. (photo from Mayor Mercy T. Goñi’s public FB account. Photo shared to SPARK).

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SPARK! turns over Waka Waka portable solar lights/chargers to the Municipality of Ayungon. The disaster management support was sponsored by the Apl.de.Ap Foundation.

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