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Student to examine natural disaster responses in the Philippines

By Katie Weiss

Masters student Angelo Paolo Trias is studying at Charles Darwin University as part of an Australia Awards Scholarship Masters student Angelo Paolo Trias is studying at Charles Darwin University as part of an Australia Awards Scholarship

A Charles Darwin University Masters student is investigating ways to promote a culture of prevention and safety in the Philippines, which is prone to natural disaster.

Filipino Angelo Paolo Trias will consider ways to increase youth participation in natural disaster prevention, preparation and response strategies as part of his two-year Master of Emergency and Disaster Management at CDU.

“The Philippines is a natural disaster-prone area,” he said.

“Rather than trying to prevent the force of nature from happening, I will focus on finding ways to help people to adapt through risk management.”

Angelo said he planned to create a strategy that would organise, qualify, equip, accredit and mobilise civil defence youth volunteers, which he would then present as a proposal to the Philippines’ Office of Civil Defense.

“I hope to help enhance the Civil Defense volunteer system so that youth can learn about, understand and actively participate in disaster risk reduction in their day-to-day lives,” he said.

Angelo said he chose to study a Masters at CDU because of the course’s interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral approach, and its strong focus on the Asia-Pacific region. He said Darwin’s climate and natural hazard risks were similar to those of the Philippines, which would also assist him in his studies.

“To achieve sustainable development and inclusive growth in the country, disaster risk reduction management needs to be prioritised and addressed,” Angelo said.

He received an Australia Awards Scholarship from the Australian Government to undertake his thesis at CDU and to build networks in Australia.