The DSWD Disaster Response Management Bureau (DRMB) is responsible for the overall management of disaster response and relief operations. The DRMB coordinates with other government agencies and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in the relief and rehabilitation efforts.
The DSWD provides social welfare services for all disadvantaged sectors of society, including those who are affected by disasters. The DSWD Disaster Response and Management Bureau is the lead government agency that provides emergency assistance to disaster victims.
The bureau has a lot of experience providing social services during calamities and man-made disasters such as fire, floods, volcanic eruptions and earthquakes. If you or know anyone who requires emergency assistance from the DSWD, make sure to have this guide on hand. Keep on reading to learn more.
What is DSWD Disaster Response Management Bureau Operations?
The Disaster Response and Management Bureau (DRMB) of the Department of Social Welfare and Development is mandated to lead disaster response by implementing, coordinating, and synchronizing disaster management programs for victims.
The DRMB was established as a result of the merging of the various divisions of the DSWD’s Protective Services Bureau. The former’s Division 3 was tasked with monitoring and carrying out disaster management operations.
The four-member DRMB was composed of a Disaster Response, Preparedness, Rehabilitation, and Information Center (DROMIC). It has 20 staff members and is focused on carrying out disaster response operations. Other tasks include camp management and coordination, food and non-food items distribution, and IDP protection.
The DRMB’s program activities include providing emergency shelter assistance, cash-for-work programs, and food packs for families. It also coordinated the distribution of non-food items and IDP protection.
In 2012, a memorandum circular was issued by the DSWD that placed the disaster response portfolio of the agency under the Protective Services Bureau’s Risk Reduction and Management division. As the number of disasters increased, so did the scope and tasks of the division.
In the same year, an amendment was made to the memorandum circular, which created a separate division within the DSWD to handle the various tasks and activities of the DRMB. This new office, known as the DRRROO, was tasked with handling the warehouse management and donation facilitation division.
The DRMB is committed to improving the disaster response capabilities of its members. This includes developing effective communication and information systems, as well as taking action in anticipation of events.
The various operational policies and guidelines of the DRMB have an impact on the effectiveness of the agency’s disaster response operations. As a result, the DRMB should regularly engage with its stakeholders to develop regulations and procedures that will help improve the efficiency of the disaster response.
In addition, the DRMB should also develop policies and procedures that will help improve the efficiency of its emergency response operations, such as the establishment of systems and procedures for the emergency cash transfer.
Due to the increasing scope of the agency’s work, the DRMB should also consider the creation of additional plantilla positions to accommodate the growing number of employees. The right-sizing of its human talent is of utmost importance as it allows the agency to retain and attract the best and most experienced individuals. In addition, the development of its organizational template and staff should be prioritized.
Functions and Responsibilities
The bureau’s main functions are:
- to recommend policies and programs for disaster response management.
- to lead in the planning, coordination and monitoring of all disaster-related efforts as per Republic Act 10121, also known as the National Disaster Risk Reduction & Management Following this are his key objectives which include disaster preparedness, mitigation, recovery and rehabilitation.
- Develop and enhance operational guidelines along disaster risk reduction and management and special concerns to ensure smooth implementation in the Field Offices/LGUs and intermediaries;
- Translate and adopt international/global standards to local disaster management situations.
- Plan and coordinate international, national and local assistance efforts in relation to the DSWD function as the lead agency of the Food and Non-Food Cluster, Camp Coordination and Management Cluster, Protection, Shelter and Livelihood Cluster;
- Provide technical assistance and resource augmentation to DSWD Field Offices and other intermediaries for the implementation or management of disaster operations;
- Adhere to and adopt universal norms, principles and standards of humanitarian assistance;
- Enhance existing procedures, structures and mechanisms on disaster data management and information dissemination;
- Study and assess the need of the Field Offices and recommend allocation of program funds and augmentation support for LG Us and other intermediaries;
- Act as the Secretariat for a focal point for the inter-agency, inter-cluster, and inter-country coordination efforts along disaster management and special concerns; and
- Coordinate and liaise with the DROMIC for disaster response operations information.
As the task of coordinating, managing, and implementing programs and services, the bureau is expected to deliver results in the following areas:
- Technical Assistance and Resource Augmentation to DSWD Field Offices
- DRRM operational policy development
- Disaster Information Management
- Response Pillar/Thematic Area Coordination
Disaster Response Clusters
The bureau operates through its various disaster response clusters:
Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) Cluster: The Cluster has specific objectives: to ensure the designation of camp managers and leaders; to ensure that temporary refuge to individual and families potentially at risk or in actual danger are immediately provided; to ensure the establishment of accurate sex and age disaggregated data, e.g. listing and profiling of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in evacuation centers or transitional shelters; to ensure that all IDPs in evacuation centers are provided with basic humanitarian needs compliant with SPHERE standards such as, but not limited to food with enough nutritional values, potable water, clothing, family items, hygiene kits and other essential non-food items.”
Moreover, it ensures the establishment of medical stations with available medicines and medical personnel, by providing electricity at evacuation centers 24/7, and seeing to it that communication facilities are in place, evacuation centers are off limits and have designated areas for pet animals, livestock and security personnel are present in the evacuation centers 24/7. To continue to seek opportunities for recovery, rehabilitation and developmental tasks as post response activities are undertaken, in case of prolonged stay.
Food and Non-Food Cluster (FNI) Cluster: This cluster contributes towards saving lives by providing food and non-food items to the affected populations in the short-term and restoring pre-disaster levels of food security in the most severely affected areas in the long term.
Internally Displaced Population (IDP) Protection Cluster: This cluster is a focal point for efforts to promote the protection of IDPs. It aims to support and enhance the Government’s capacity to ensure that protection issues do not arise in emergency situations and to respond and mitigate the effect of any protection issues that do arise.
Disaster Preparedness for Response Cluster: This cluster plans and coordinates the DSWD’s disaster preparedness efforts. Its mission is to ensure that DSWD has a comprehensive and coherent approach in addressing disasters. The DPRC leads in the planning, coordinating, monitoring and evaluating of all DRRM efforts of the department. It also conducts capacity building for the DSWD and LGU staff, which includes developing their capacity to respond to disasters through education and training activities.
Moreover, it aims to reinforce respondents’ capacity in effectively managing various psycho-social support services. It will also augment the skills in pre-positioning of logistics and resources, camp coordination and management, and strengthening partnerships with GOs, NGOs & LGUs.
List of Programs and Services
Here are the major programs and services of the DSWD-DRRM Bureau:
Across the bureau and its several clusters, here is a list of the programs the DSWD has in place to prepare for and address natural disasters:
Comprehensive Emergency Program for Children (CEPC)
On May 18, 2016, the Philippines Government enacted Republic Act 10821, which provides for the protection and relief of children during and after natural disasters and other emergencies.
The Philippines’ primary policy is to protect and promote the rights of children in emergencies and disasters. This is evidenced by the country’s Declaration of Policy, which states that children have the right to be protected from harmful effects and circumstances that can endanger their survival. The law, known as RA 10821, is also referred to as the “Child’s Emergency Protection Act”.
The passage of Republic Act 10821 is regarded as pioneering and unique legislation that aims to improve the lives of children and adults in the country. It was the culmination of a series of consultations conducted with various stakeholder groups.
Despite the long process for the government to develop and implement the legislation, the consultations conducted with various stakeholder groups helped draft the bill.
Emergency Cash Transfer Operations Manual
The Emergency Cash Transfer Program (ECT) is an adaptive strategy that aims to bridge the gap between humanitarian assistance and immediate disaster relief by providing cash assistance to families affected by natural disasters and emergencies. Unlike other forms of aid, ECT is not an anticipatory response but a post-intervention intervention that provides cash transfers to families affected by shocks.
In major disasters, the needs of families are often varied. Their food and non-food items are needed to survive and provide for their well-being. In some cases, urgent needs are also identified such as the availability of medicines and health care. Besides these, other items such as wheelchairs and canes are also needed for people with disabilities and senior citizens.
People who have been affected by disasters usually need immediate assistance to repair their damaged houses and get back on their feet. While ECT is not replacing their regular income, it can help them meet their basic needs while they are still recovering from shocks and destruction.
ECT can also be partnered with the distribution of non-food items, such as food and non-alcoholic drinks, to help meet the needs of individuals and families. This strategy can be implemented when the local markets have not fully recovered and are still at the early stages of their operation.
ECT can also help reduce the administrative costs associated with distributing food by coordinating with the local markets. It can also help the beneficiaries buy goods from local producers. This strategy complements the cash transfers that ECT provides to families during the early recovery phase.
Various types of cash-for-work programs are also available, such as the Emergency Shelter Assistance, Cash-for-Work, and Cashfor-Training. These programs require proof of their outputs.
Emergency response and counseling (ECT) can be implemented in different disaster-stricken areas and can be provided to a family multiple times depending on the situation. However, this type of assistance is only available if the needs assessment is carried out.
The DSWD Secretary can activate the Emergency Cash Assistance program (ECT) when a state of calamity has been declared. However, this program only begins when the local markets in the affected areas are able to provide the necessary supplies to the affected population.
Two Phases of Support:
ECT provides both short-term and long-term assistance to help individuals and families recover from natural disasters. The aid program’s two phases are 1) relief assistance and 2) rehabilitation support. This support helps individuals and families get back on track and start to rebuild their lives.
ECT’s implementation depends on the rate of assistance that’s provided to the individuals and families affected by the disaster at each phase.
You may find a copy of the Emergency Cash Transfer Operations Manual here.
CCCM and Protection COVID-19 Operational Guidance
On March 8, 2020, President Rodrigo Duterte issued Proclamation 922, which declared a public health emergency in the Philippines. It prompted a comprehensive government response to the COVID-19 pandemic. A few months later, he issued Proclamation 929, which placed the country under a state of calamity to contain the spread of the disease.
The number of people infected with the virus has already reached over 11,000. Although the disease is still active, the country is still exposed to various hazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, and hydro-meteorological phenomena. Due to the effects of these natural disasters, the displacement of people in affected areas is an inevitable consequence.
The displacement of people, especially those residing in camps and temporary shelters, can expose them to various vulnerabilities. These include limited access to basic services. During the COVID-19 pandemic, this vulnerability became more apparent.
It is, therefore, important that the government and its agencies have the necessary resources and strategies to address the needs of the displaced during the COVID-19 pandemic. This can be done by establishing effective and resilient camps and evacuation centers. Although establishing these facilities is an option, they are also important to be managed properly to protect the camp management personnel and the IDPs.
This document aims to provide an operational guide for protecting the camp management personnel and the individuals affected by the outbreak. It is also intended for those who are involved in the planning and implementation of the response activities.
You may find a copy of the CCCM and Protection COVID-19 Operational Guidance here.
Risk Resiliency Program 2020
The DSWD-DRMB is implementing the Risk Resiliency Program (RR) 2020. This program aims to strengthen the capacity of local government units, non-governmental organizations, and other stakeholders in responding to disasters.
A key component of RR 2020 is the Regional Disaster Planning and Response Coordination Mechanism (RDPRCM). The RDPRCM is composed of all local government units that are vulnerable to disasters as well as key partners such as DSWD-DRMB, DOH-DOST, LGU-LGU Councils on Health and Nutrition (COSHN), Local Health Offices (LHOs), Civil Defense Office (CDO), Bureau of Fire Protection
DRRM Programs, Activities, and Projects
Humanitarian Relief Assistance – This project seeks to provide disaster-affected families with Food and Non-Food Items (FNFI), which include Family Food Packs (FFPs) consisting of 6 kilos of rice, four tin cans of sardines, four tin cans of corned beef, and six sachets of instant coffee/powdered cereal drink; Each pack is good for two days for a family of 5 members. It also aims to provide other essential needs such as mats, blankets, tarpaulins, hygiene kits and clothing for the affected families.
Construction of Bunkhouses or Temporary Shelters – This project focuses on providing temporary or transition shelters to meet the immediate needs of families displaced by massive casualties and destruction of their homes and communities in the aftermath of a major disaster or crisis. Temporary or transitional shelters are constructed with locally available construction materials. They can be created within a short period to provide relief and support to families until they can repair their damaged structures or rebuild new ones.
Emergency Shelter Assistance (ESA) – This is a program for family-victims of disasters whose houses are either totally or partially damaged. The per capita assistance will range from ₱10,000 to ₱30,000/family and depends on the necessity of assistance as well as the type of disaster.
Modified Shelter Assistance – The program will provide financial or material aid(or both) to augment the resources of family victims of disasters with a modified design adaptable to the socio-cultural background of the project recipients. The rate ranges from ₱70,000.00/family.
Core Shelter Assistance Program (CSAP) – The provision of environment-friendly, structurally strong shelter units that can withstand up to 220 kph wind velocity, earthquakes up to intensity 4 of the Richter scale and other similar natural hazards in relocation sites provided by the national or local government units using locally available materials to revitalize local economy. The rate ranges from ₱160,000.00/family.
Online ServicesCash-for-Work (CFW) / Food-for-Work (FFW) – In order to help families recover from the disaster, the Government is providing them with temporary jobs and cash or food assistance in exchange for community works and trainings participated in, either along the Disaster Mitigation, Preparedness, Response, or Early Recovery and Rehabilitation phases. The rate is equivalent to 75% of the regional minimum wage of the covered regions based on the latest prescribed rates set by DOLE-NWPC. Maximum 15 days engagement. However, the number of days for extension varies based on the work component to be undertaken.
Virtual OpCenter – DROMIC is part of the Disaster Response Management Bureau (DRMB), a division within the Department of Social Welfare and Development.
This platform is a web-based application that allows the public to access information, request assistance and disseminate messages during disasters. It is also used by local government units (LGUs), nongovernment organizations (NGOs), and other agencies in their respective jurisdictions as a tool for disaster response management. The DROMIC platform has been operational since May 2015 and has been tested extensively during the recent typhoons that hit the country.
DREAMB e-reklamo system – This is the DSWD-DREAMB’s complaints management ticket system. The main purpose for implementing this ticket system is to manage related complaints regarding our services and to provide you a better service. Every complaint will be assigned a unique ticket number, through which you can track the progress and responses online. For your reference, the platform provides complete archives and a history of all your complaints and their resolution. A valid email address is required to use this system.
Here are some photos of the DSWD disaster response to learn more about this department:
Frequently Asked Questions
Got questions about the DSWD DRMB? We’ve got them covered here:
1. What is the role of DSWD in disaster response?
The DSWD is expected to provide effective leadership and coordination during times of disaster. It is also expected to quickly mobilize and deliver necessary resources for the response. In the case of disasters that affect a specific region, the agency’s local counterparts should be able to provide immediate assistance.
2. What is the expected role of the DSWD in DRRM implementation?
The objective of this project is to raise public awareness about the importance of Disaster Risk Reduction Management (DRRM) and provide livelihood opportunities to vulnerable communities and families. Through skills training, participants can improve their chances of surviving and recovering from disasters.
3. What government agencies are involved in disaster management in the Philippines?
The various government agencies that are part of the National Disaster Framework include the Bureau of Fire Protection, the Department of Interior and Local Government, the Philippine National Police, and the NTC. A new organization focused on the commercial and amateur radio industry was also established on Oct 4, 2022.
4. What government agencies are involved in disaster management?
These are government agencies that monitor and manage the activities of government agencies and organizations involved in disaster response and recovery. These include the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council and PAGASA.
5. How does the government handle disaster preparedness and management Philippines?
In order to prepare for emergencies, local governments can utilize geomapping technology to create evacuation routes and develop disaster-proof facilities.
6. Why is government assistance important in disaster?
The government’s primary objective is to strengthen its resource assurance framework. This includes supporting the development and implementation of disaster reduction programs.
7. What needs to be done to support these activities of DRMB?
To support the activities of the Disaster Risk Reduction Management (DRRM), we must follow the instructions given by the government. This includes identifying and assessing the risk of disasters, developing a disaster risk management strategy, and integrating the program into the national development framework.
8. How does your LGU Local Government Unit execute the implementation about disaster risk management?
The local government unit (LGU) is responsible for ensuring that its residents are aware of the risks associated with natural disasters and that it can effectively implement effective disaster mitigation measures. It should also conduct an education campaign about the importance of preparing for emergencies.
Video: DSWD ready to provide relief to storm victims | ANC
The past few months have seen many storms wreak havoc in the country, but it is the recent super typhoon that has left thousands of people without homes and livelihoods. The government has been quick to respond to this threat through the DSWD-DRMB, saying that they are ready to provide relief to storm victims.
In this video, the DSWD spokesperson also provides an update on what the department has done to prepare for the series of storms and calamities that are expected to hit the country since mid-year or the monsoon season in the Philippines.
The DSWD through its Disaster Response and Management Bureau (DRMB), has been at the forefront of the government’s disaster response efforts. The agency is tasked with coordinating the delivery of relief services to disaster victims and helping them recover from their losses.
As a tropical country, where typhoons are prone to occur, the DSWD is always prepared for storms and other calamities. The agency has been providing relief assistance to disaster victims as early as 24 hours after a storm hits.
We hope that you’ve learned something from this article. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them at the bottom of this page.
DISCLAIMER: This post is only intended to inform and provide general information. If you have any questions about the issues discussed in this post or any other legal matter, feel free to reach out to the DSWD-DRMB through the following contact details.
DSWD Disaster Response Operations
Address: Batasan Rd, Quezon City, Metro Manila
Telephone Number: 3522427
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/DRMBOfficial