Many of us across the risk management industry actively help communities in need after natural disasters, through donations, working with organizations to promote resilience, or through on-the-ground assistance. Our intimate understanding of the power of these catastrophes makes us acutely aware of the need to act.
This is true for everyone here at RMS, where our values embrace the need to understand risk, build resiliency, and make an impact to help improve the lives of communities who live with the threat of natural disasters. One of the ways we live our values is through our annual RMS Impact Trek, where both RMS employees and our clients work with the social enterprise Build Change in some of the world’s most catastrophe-prone areas.
If you are an RMS client, I would like to extend an invitation to our annual RMS Impact Trek. This is the fourth year that we are sponsoring representatives from our clients to join RMS employees and Build Change so that their skills can be used to build stronger communities.
RMS and Build Change staff advise on house retrofitting on a previous RMS Impact Trek in Nepal
Focus on the Philippines
Our focus for 2019 turns to the Philippines. Build Change has been active in the country since 2013, working on a range of long-term projects from helping to rebuild schools, pre-disaster retrofitting of homes in poorer areas of Manila, through to training technicians in disaster-resistant construction skills in Guiuan in southeast Samar.
The country is exposed to some of the most intense typhoons on the planet, as well as damaging earthquakes. Typhoon Haiyan tore across the Visayas Islands in 2013, killing over 6,000, with 1.14 million structures totally or partially damaged. And this year, Typhoon Mangkhut made landfall as a category 5-equivalent super typhoon on the island of Luzon in the northeast of the country, as it swept westward towards Hong Kong and China. 127 people were killed in the Philippines from Mangkhut.
Rebuilding takes time and resources, both of which can be in short supply, and with the ever-present threat of another typhoon season, communities in the Philippines want to see a step change where the built environment can withstand the worst of a storm.
By contributing our considerable combined knowledge and extensive skills, we can to help these communities build a brighter future with stronger homes and schools. In doing so, we will also get valuable hands-on experience reducing risk while helping to train new leaders in new markets.
RMS will select a handful of client representatives to join us on the RMS Impact Trek, which includes all flights from your location to the Philippines, and all other expenses. The trek will take place between March 17 to March 25, 2019.
While working with Build Change and RMS employees, clients joining us on the Impact Trek will be able to assist Build Change with its operational needs as well as get the opportunity to travel in the field experiencing how to make safer housing and schooling a reality in catastrophe-vulnerable areas.
If you want to get involved, we have created a web page with all the information you will need, including details on an information session to learn more about the trip, FAQs, videos of past treks and the application for this year’s trip.
You only have until the end of this week to apply – applications are due by Friday, December 14, 2018.
Clients will be anonymously evaluated based on a blind mutual selection process between Build Change and past Impact Trekkers. Selection will be based on an individual’s demonstrated effort for creating a positive impact in their communities and Build Change’s organizational needs.
We hope that you will consider joining us to further our shared goal of creating a more resilient global society.