A community initiated Market Level Mock Drill by Waves Community Volunteer Group was organized at Sylhet. The market is situated in one of the busiest parts of the city. The six-storied infrastructure has around 75 shops in its ground floor while there is the office of a government bank (Sonali Bank) on the 2nd and 3rd floor. The top three floors of the building are used for residential purpose occupied by 35 families (158 people). So the volunteers picked this building as it covered both household level and institutional level safety through the simulation. This intervention was implemented in close collaboration with Ward Disaster Management Committee, Fire Service and Civil Defense and Surma Market Committee. Islamic Relief Worldwide under 6th DIPECHO Action Plan provided supporting role in the whole process.
The majority of the expenditure was carried by the community stakeholders themselves as Waves Social Welfare Club, a locally established club that works for different community welfare objectives, and the Surma Super Market businessmen’s committee jointly incurred the cost for the entire programme (around 75,000 BDT). Apart from that, the entire market had to be closed down for half a day which (considering the number of shops, most of which are foreign currency exchange shops and two stories of the building is for a government bank office) is banking hour and busiest business hour for the remittance and money exchange. The bank and the market committee were willing to chip in their opportunity cost and dedicate their much valuable time and financial turnover (amounting to an appropriate Taka 1 million) for the welfare of the community.
The attached document captures one such good practice from Sylhet where community volunteers and the existing community networks have put their act together to make a demonstration for the local people on disaster response and drawn their attention towards the necessity of disaster preparedness.
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