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TOP > Message to the Natural Disaster Youth Summit (NDYS) 2005

Message to the Natural Disaster Youth Summit (NDYS) 2005

Pro-active Learning and Action

Comments on the NDYS2005 

This was a wonderful experience to participate in the NDYS 2005 in Awaji Island.  
I participated in the preliminary meeting on 18th of January 2005, where I experienced video-conference with students in Bam (Iran) and Yerevan (Armenia).  This time, on 28th of March, there were students from many countries, as far as Argentina, Armenia, Senegal, USA, Slovakia, Russia, Indonesia, Iran, Kathmandu, and many more, apart from the students of different parts of Japan. 

The summit had three most significant parts:

            Dr. Rajib Shaw
            Associate Professor
             Kyoto University, Japan

1)      It has facilitated direct contact of the students, and thereby promoted the exchange of diverse culture,

2)      It has expanded the friendship and network, which will be the base of future work, and

3)      It had provided the platform not only to study, but also to act on disaster preparedness.

It is often argued that disaster prevention and mitigation should be part of the culture (防災文化).  To make an effective international exchange, cultural exchange plays a very important role, and the NDYS summit has rightly targeted at this.  The other issue is that disaster prevention should be dealt with fun, enjoyment, recreation and game.  This should be done in a way, that it is inculcated in the daily lives, and then only it can prepare a culture of safety. 

The ownership of the summit lies with the students, where they actively participated in different projects and activities, and came out with different new ideas, innovations and directions.   This holistic participation was very significant for the mind-set in students, where they are not only looking at the problems, but also try to find the solutions and root causes of the disasters.  Thus, among the four phases of disaster education (listen, see, talk and do), the summit put significant emphasis on “Do” or action, where students undertake certain measures as disaster prevention activities. 


Definitely all the students participating in the summit are not going to be future disaster experts.  However, knowing disaster risk and solving the disaster related problem at this early stage, will be able to provide a disaster consciousness, which will enable them to take action at their individual capacity.  And, this will be the most successful part of the whole process. 

Last, but not the least, the tremendous enthusiasm of the teachers and the organizers (especially J-ERN members) made the whole process lively, and make it sustainable in the long run.  I am very optimistic of the whole initiative, and looking forward to its future activities.  


Natural Disaster Youth Summit 2005 in Hyogo    Declaration
March 28 ( Mon ), 2005
Awaji Yume Butai International Conference Center main hall , Awaji island


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