Advancing Anticipatory Action: Insights from the SNAP South Asia National Planning Meeting in Sri Lanka

Advancing Anticipatory Action: Insights from the SNAP South Asia National Planning Meeting in Sri Lanka

14 Mar 2023

Colombo, Sri Lanka

Example Image Figure 1: Maj. Gen. U. Herath Director General of DMC delivering his opening remarks

On March 14, 2023, Colombo served as the backdrop for a significant gathering—the National Planning Meeting of the Sustainable National Anticipatory Action through Preparedness (SNAP) South Asia Program in Sri Lanka. Hosted by the Disaster Management Center (DMC) and supported by the Asian Disaster Preparedness Center and USAID Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance, this event brought together various stakeholders, including government representatives, civil society organizations, the private sector, UN agencies, and disability organizations. Their common objective is to bolster capacities for anticipatory action and early response in the face of potential disasters. At the meeting's inauguration, Major General (Retd) Udaya Herath, the newly appointed Director-General of DMC, delivered a message emphasizing collaboration and proactivity. Drawing from his extensive military background, Maj. Gen. Herath underscored the criticality of anticipatory action, stressing the need to mitigate threats before they materialize into crises. His words resonated with the audience, setting the tone for the meeting.


Figure 2: Participants from government agencies, civil society organizations, UN Agencies, and the private sector discussing priority activities to support Anticipatory Action in Sri Lanka.

The DMC gave a presentation to introduce the newly approved National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP) 2023-2030, which includes provisions for anticipatory action and lays a robust foundation for concerted efforts in this domain.

Furthermore, unveiling critical findings from the country landscape study on Anticipatory Action supported by ADPC provided invaluable insights, serving as a compass for identifying priority areas. Deliberations revolved around policy guidelines, partnerships, capacity building, and knowledge exchange—pillars upon which the SNAP program aims to thrive. These findings would steer the action, guiding interventions toward tangible outcomes.

Figure 3: Participants of the SNAP National Planning Meeting in Colombo, Sri Lanka

As the gathering closed on the National Planning Meeting, it left a trail of optimism and determination. With newfound insights, strengthened partnerships, and a shared vision, stakeholders departed with a renewed sense of purpose. The journey towards anticipatory action and disaster resilience in Sri Lanka has taken a significant stride forward—one fueled by collaboration, foresight, and a steadfast commitment to safeguarding the safety and security of vulnerable communities.