Garden Route municipalities to benefit from Partnership for Risk and Resilience

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In the wake of the Garden Route fires, Santam and the Department of Cooperative Governance have extended the Partnership for Risk and Resilience from which five million people stand to benefit.

The Partnership for Risk and Resilience (P4RR) assists municipalities’ build capacity in combatting the risks of fire and flooding within vulnerable communities.

“The recent devastating fires in the Garden Route and surrounding areas have highlighted the need for better collaboration between provincial and district disaster management centres to enhance the capacity of local government in the areas of fire and flood risk management,” says John Lomberg, head of stakeholder relations and CSI at Santam.

Santam’s Partnership for Risk and Resilience, previously known as BAAM (Business-Adopt-A-Municipality), was a cooperative partnership established in 2012. The initiative was originally established to assist municipalities to address vulnerable levels of risk when it came to fire, flood and storm surge hazards within poorer communities. At that time, five municipalities were selected to be part of the programme. Following the signing of the agreement, ten district municipalities and 53 local municipalities will now benefit from the expanded programme over the next five years.

“Through the partnership, Santam has been instrumental in enabling selected municipalities to respond to emergency and disaster risk management events,” adds Lomberg.

Collaboration with the municipalities via the P4RR has resulted in several contributions being made by Santam in order to help mitigate ‘on the ground’ insurable risks. These include the resourcing of local fire stations with equipment such as fire hoses and protective gear, and the enabling of geographical information systems aimed at improving emergency response and disaster management capabilities.

“We have greatly improved the provision of disaster management services across several municipalities. The expansion of the existing programme stands to benefit more than five million people between now and 2020,” Lomberg explains.