Awareness of Disaster Response in West Papua’s Remote Areas

The importance of Disaster response in West Papua's remote areas

Located right on the equator, it is understandable that there will always be a threat of natural disasters for the people of West Papua. However, not everyone knows what to do when that occurs, especially people in remote areas. So, raising awareness of disaster response in West Papua’s remote areas is important. 

People need to know what kind of natural disasters often occur in West Papua. They also need to know what kind of role the government plays regarding the disaster. Then, the role of civil society is no less important because the government clearly cannot do all the work alone.

So, here is the explanation regarding all of that!

Natural Disasters that Often Occur in West Papua 

When talking about the island of Papua, according to geography, it is located near Australia. Around there, there is the Indo-Australian tectonic plate, which is prone to movement. Due to its own movement, natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, and landslides are frequent in the land of Papua.

Moreover, there have been climate changes that have occurred in the last few decades. This makes the potential for disaster increase day by day. In 2022, from January to December, disasters rose by 81% compared to 2010. On the record, there are 3,544 cases of disasters in Indonesia. [1]

Obviously, the number of natural disasters in West Papua and all over Indonesia must be aligned with government and civil society preparations. People need to prepare, so the loss can be as minimal as possible if natural disasters happen in the future, whether physical or material loss.

The government and civil society must work together to improve the disaster response in West Papua.

The Role of Government in Raising Awareness of Disaster Response

The Government's Role in Disaster response in West Papua's remote areas

It is already common knowledge that the government has an important role in improving the disaster response in West Papua, especially in remote areas requiring more attention. In there, the natural conditions are still raw and more extreme, which makes mitigation more difficult.

That is why the government must diligently socialize with the community in remote areas. The people need to know all the things that could lead to disaster. So they can minimize disasters that they can minimize, for example, floods and landslides. [2]

Aside from that, the government needs to organize disaster mitigation training in West Papua. Especially the natural disasters that occur due to tectonic activity, people literally cannot prevent it, like earthquakes. Not only in urban areas, people in remote areas also need training.

There are many mitigation training materials that they can learn — starting from handling first aid, management of public kitchens, and water rescue. The government also needs to teach how to dispose of corpses, how to manage themselves and do an evacuation simulation when disasters occur.

The Role of Civil Society in Raising Awareness of Disaster Response

Community Needs Disaster Response

Basically, raising public awareness of the importance of disaster response is not only the government’s responsibility. Socialization needs to be done with civil society must also participate. The goal is to minimize the damage, by: 

  • informing a disaster event to BPBD or related institutions so they can help quickly.
  • carry out an independent evacuation and conduct a rapid assessment of the impact of a disaster. 
  • Also, civil society needs to participate in the emergency response according to their area of ​​expertise. 
  • When a disaster has occurred, the community must also be able to respond to disasters. For example, such as protecting vulnerable groups and immediately restoring all the vital facilities and infrastructure. 

So, that explains the importance of raising awareness of disaster response in West Papua’s remote areas. For this to happen, the government and civil society must work together. This will make the damage will be far less minimal when a disaster occurs.