ALERTOMAS v.2.0 series 2017, a yearly University activity spearheaded by the Environmental Sustainability and Action; Disaster Risk and Reduction Management (DRRM); and Leadership, Organizational Development, and Good Governance Clusters of UST Simbahayan Community Development Office, was held from January 25 to 27, 2017. It was aimed to equip leaders of University partner communities with knowledge regarding Disaster Preparedness, Basic Life Support and First Aid, among others, with the hope of creating a group of citizens who are ready and willing to jump into action when called upon by circumstances.

College of Science ComDev Coordinator Asst. Prof. Jaycee Paguirigan, PhD, pointed out in his opening address that the second reiteration of the activity aims to teach the participants skills that will then be useful to mitigate the effect of disaster and rehabilitation of the community afterwards. A climate change documentary film hosted by Sen. Loren Legarda and produced the Mines and Geosciences Bureau presented an overview of the effect of earthquakes, floods, and landslides. A demonstration of basic life support, first aid training, and other rescue operations by Mr. Juliano S. Pareña Jr. culminated the first day of ALERTOMAS v.2.0.

The highlight of the three-day event was the simulation on rescuing patients from a building through rappelling. A re-creation of an earthquake scenario was conducted to show how rescue is conducted when experiencing of magnitudes 6, 7, and 8. Also performed were drills on administering first aid in rescuing casualties in a collapsed structure.

Similar activities encourage the participation of citizens in recognizing the threat of nature’s wrath. Since calamities are inevitable, being prepared and knowledgeable on

what to do in the event of a disaster will alleviate the destruction, reduce the number of casualties and prevent injuries from being mishandled or getting worse. The activity empowers the community to be alert at all times but also advocates ways to prevent the occurrence of such disasters.