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Pacific Disaster Center Receives Prestigious Award

May 26, 2022

Bali, Indonesia / Kihei, HI: The University of Hawaiʻi’s Pacific Disaster Center (PDC) was named laureate of the prestigious United Nations Sasakawa Award for Disaster Risk Reduction during the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction (GPDRR) in Bali, Indonesia on May 25, 2022. “This award is given every three years to individuals or institutions that have made substantive impact in reducing disaster risk,” said Mami Mizutori, special representative of the secretary-general for disaster risk reduction, during the opening ceremony. The UN Sasakawa Award for 2022 focuses on “Building resilience through a multi-hazard approach.”

“Pacific Disaster Center is honored and humbled by the recognition we’ve received from the United Nations and our partners for our efforts to help create safer, more disaster-resilient communities,” said PDC Executive Director Ray Shirkhodai following the announcement. “We share this award with all like-minded, hard-working humanitarians with a passion for helping the vulnerable among us and reducing disaster risk to make life better for all citizens.”

“We proudly support PDC’s recognition under this year’s Sasakawa Award. For nearly two decades, ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) nations and the PDC have worked together to advance early-warning and disaster risk reduction science throughout Southeast Asia. PDC is a vital partner who has helped the AHA Centre (ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on disaster management) ensure the best science and technology are appropriately and effectively utilized to prepare for and respond to disasters throughout the region,” said AHA Centre Assistant Director for Disaster Monitoring and Analysis Lawrence Anthony Dimailig.

Dimailig said PDC’s DisasterAWARE platform and risk information serve as the foundation of the AHA Centre’s multi-hazard Disaster Monitoring and Response System, which is integral to the operational coordination of nearly every major disaster event in the region.