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Meta Civil Defense achieves USAR light level accreditation

March 5, 2024

Meta Civil Defense joins USAR program as light level search and rescue group

The National Unit for Disaster Risk Management (UNGRD) in Colombia has recently accredited the Meta Civil Defense as a light level urban search and rescue (USAR) group.

This newly accredited group, known as USAR COL-30, consists of 38 members, including 13 women.

They are now operationally equipped to assist in search and rescue operations for communities affected by disasters in their region.

Diana Corrales, a professional from the USAR Program at UNGRD, expressed her views on this development: “Through the Unit, as the governing body of the System, we have managed to integrate this group into the emergency response in the department.

“We want this process to continue to mature, and we welcome them to the USAR Program in Colombia,” said Diana Corrales.

Achievement of Meta Civil Defense in risk management and social action

Martín Nieto, the acting general director of the Colombian Civil Defense, also highlighted this achievement.

“Congratulations to the members of the Meta section; today, we are strengthened in our response processes and risk reduction. Social action and environmental management are also part of our work,” Nieto stated.

The USAR Program, led by the UNGRD in Colombia, certified the Meta section of the Civil Defense after they complied with the National Accreditation Process (NAP), which adheres to international standards set by the United Nations International Search and Rescue Advisory Group (INSARAG).

This accreditation is a notable accomplishment, reflecting Colombia’s commitment to efficient disaster response both nationally and internationally.

Importance of equity and inclusion in emergency response programs

The UNGRD and the Colombian Civil Defense continue to emphasize equity and inclusion in their programs, policies, and emergency response capabilities.

Laura Lara, the leader of the USAR COL-30 team from Meta Civil Defense, reflected on the journey to accreditation: “It is a great satisfaction to see all the effort of four years reflected in achieving accreditation. All this work is also thanks to the National Unit,” said Laura Lara.

FSJA Comment

The accreditation of the Meta Civil Defense as a light level USAR group by the National Unit for Disaster Risk Management marks a significant step in Colombia’s emergency response and disaster management capabilities.

The inclusion of a diverse team, with a notable presence of women, in the USAR COL-30, reflects the ongoing commitment to gender equity and diversity in critical emergency response roles.

This milestone in Colombia’s disaster management efforts is a testament to the country’s dedication to improving its response mechanisms and promoting inclusive practices within its emergency management systems.

NOTE: This article was translated using automated software, any errors are unintentional.

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