On February 12-14, 2020, ICHARM organized the 13th Follow-up Seminar and the 4th Plenary Session of the Platform on Water Resilience and Disasters under IFI in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
The Follow-up Seminar was held on February 12, gathering 32 participants, including 10 ex-trainees who graduated from the Disaster Management Policy Program, which is jointly managed by ICHARM and GRIPS and funded by JICA, and the representatives from the relevant government organizations of Sri Lanka, the Embassy of Japan, and the JICA Sri Lanka Office. The Follow-up Seminar invites graduates who completed degree at ICHARM and presently serve for their home countries, with the aims of helping them solve water-related issues of their countries, strengthening the network among them, and grasping additional needs to further improve the training programs. The Follow-up Seminar is held every year in different countries of the graduates. Last year, it was held in Nepal.
At the seminar, ICHARM Director KOIKE Toshio gave welcome remarks, which were followed by opening remarks by the representatives of the Embassy of Japan, the JICA Sri Lanka Office, the Irrigation Department, the Sri Lanka Land Reclamation and Development Corporation (SLLRDC), and some other organizations. Prof. A. W. Jayawardena of Hong Kong University, a former ICHARM training and research adviser, and Dr. R. L. Lalith Rajapakse of Moratuwa University, a former ICHARM research specialist, delivered invited lectures. Then, all the graduates reported activities in which they were involved after they had gone back to Sri Lanka and exchanged opinions on expectations for ICHARM and other issues with other participants.
On the next day, February 13, 2020, ICHARM organized the 4th Plenary Session of the Platform on Water Resilience and Disasters under IFI in Sri Lanka. The session was chaired by Eng. Mohanarajah, the director-general of the Irrigation Department, and attended by the director generals of the Disaster Management Center (DMC), the Department of Meteorology (DOM), and the National Building Research Organization (NBRO). Director KOIKE and Prof. Srikantha Herath, the team leader of the Center for Urban Water (CUrW), made presentations. Speakers from ICHARM and Sri Lankan organizations followed, reporting their recent activities and future directions. At the end of the session, all the participants agreed to develop a progress report on the activities that the Platform conducted for the past two and a half years and to draft an implementation plan for its activities in the next several years by identifying tasks, responsible organizations, and timelines.
On February 14, some participants, including the ICHARM graduates, took a field trip to river erosion sites near Colombo and had a discussion about how to solve such technical problems in the basin.
Participants in the 4th Plenary Session of the Platform on Water Resilience and Disasters under IFI
Advisor EGASHIRA gave technical advice during the field trip