A two-day workshop aimed at increasing knowledge and exposure of available practical tools to make social protection programmes more shock responsive in Small Island Developing States (SIDS) gets underway in st. Lucia tomorrow.

The workshop is being organised by the St. Lucia-based Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Commission and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and is designed to protect the most vulnerable after emergencies.

The organisers said the National Cash Transfer Programmes for Emergencies is being held in light of the on-going rebuilding efforts post Hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017 and is intended to provide social services and national emergency offices across nine-member states with the essential information and tools to enhance their social protection systems following an external shock.

They said the workshop will pursue multiple objectives including learning from the experiences of the Joint Emergency Cash Transfers (JECT) in Dominica and the British Virgin Islands as well as building capacity of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to roll out cash based interventions building on national public assistance programmes that target most vulnerable families and children.

It is also intended to enhance knowledge to implement Communication for Development (C4D) techniques for cash based interventions before, during and after an emergency, to ensure cash based interventions are successful during implementation.

The workshop will bring together experts in the area of post-disaster management from the OECS Commission, UNICEF, Social Welfare Departments and Disaster Management Offices in the OECS member countries.

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