The major earthquake that shattered West Nusa Tenggara (NTB) Province in 2018 has prompted various parties to promote community resilience as a means for communities to reduce and manage disaster risk. To ensure alignment of efforts and effective use of resources, a collective guideline is needed. According to Hairul Anwar, the Program Manager of KONSEPSI, compared to the time after the disasters about five years ago, today it is easier to manage disaster resilience programs in NTB. He and his team no longer worry about implementing the program in villages because now NTB has a guideline on village resilience that serves as a collective reference.
“The village also has a better understanding of how to position third-party programs to support activities toward resilience, something they have already been striving for. The synergy becomes smoother with the village, village government, district, province, and other parties with similar programs,” he said.
KONSEPSI or Consortium for Participation Development and Study (Konsorsium untuk Studi dan Pengembangan Partisipasi) is a partner of SIAP SIAGA Program in NTB Province. Since working in NTB Province from May 2021, one of the focus areas of the SIAP SIAGA Program has been supporting subnational government in strengthening and developing policies and regulations for disaster preparedness by building the capacity on village resilience. This focus correlates with the NTB Governor’s first mission, enshrined in the Subnational Medium-Term Development Plan (RPJMD) of NTB Province 2018-2023, which specifically mentions the target of establishing 434 Disaster Resilient Villages (Destana) by the end of 2023.
Lalu Satria Utama, a Senior Planner in the Subnational Development Planning Agency (Bappeda) of NTB Province, upon reflecting on the post-2018 earthquake, highlighted potential disasters in areas originally not categorised as disaster-prone areas. From there, it was concluded that the most effective measure to prepare resilience was to promote it at the village level. It is the villages that best understand their own context. Villages also have more resources than those available from the provincial government, which faces financial constraints. “Therefore, this Destana program was included in RPJMD 2018 – 2023, with a target of establishing 434 Destana by the end of 2023,” he said.
However, this target is challenged by resource limitiation. Referring to the Subnational Poverty Eradication Plan (RKPD) of the Subnational Disaster Management Agency (BPBD) of the NTB Province, the annual budget allocation is only enough to establish 10 Destana meaning that over a five year period resources were sufficient for a maximum of 50 destana villages.
In addition, the willingness to accelerate Destana establishment in targeted villages is considered to be supported by a well-developed concept and guidelines. . According to Lalu, Bappeda knows that there are other parties from the government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and universities that have implemented programs similar to Destana. However, the data on these programs are not systematicallycompiled. Thus, it is difficult to align them with the Destana Program promoted by the NTB Provincial Government.
Hairul confirmed that many programs on the ground are similar to Destana. These include Disaster Prepared Villages or Kampung Siaga Bencana (KSB) by the Ministry of Social Affairs, Climate Village Program (Proklim) by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, and Community-based Disaster Ready Team (SIBAT) by the Indonesian Red Cross. Each party implements its program independently without coordinating with one other. Indicators are important in the context of establishing Destana. Without clear and aligned indicators, it will be difficult to monitor and evaluate the resilience quality of the assisted villages.
Some villages have received a number of similar and overlapping programs placing an increased burden on villages and limiting results.
“At that point, we were grateful to receive support from the SIAP SIAGA Program, which offered a system-based approach, something very crucial in this kind of situation,” said Hairul.
A change of system and paradigm
Lalu Satria said that support from the SIAP SIAGA Program means that Bappeda has a partner in developing disaster risk reduction-based planning documents. These documents are essential as a foundation to ensure the sustainability of implemented development programs.
In addition to planning documents, continued Lalu Satria, there is also the crucial need for a mindset change, specifically from a mindset of “disasters are the responsibility of the BPBD” to “disasters are a shared responsibility”. Even though disaster risk reduction has yet to become a Key Performance Indicator (KPI), Bappeda NTB has been trying to build recognition amongst all parties that preparing for and reducing the risk of disasters is critical and is and should be a collective concern. One of the ways of doing this is by clarifying roles of Subnational Government Organisations (OPDs) in charge of providing basic services, such as the Health Office and Housing and Residential Office, to apply a Minimum Service Standard (MSS) that refers to disaster management requirement in their services.
“So that all levels of government, from the province to village level, consider this important, it must be mandatory and enshrined in planning documents. This way, the change will be systematic. This is what we have done collectively as a result of the partnership with the SIAP SIAGA Program” said Lalu Satria.
Along with this mindset change, Bappeda has coordinated the formulation of a regulation serving as an umbrella for the acceleration of establishing Destana in NTB. This regulation formulation involves multiple stakheholders in NTB, namely the BPBD team as the author and the Disaster Risk Reduction Forum (FPRB) of NTB as the formulating team. FPRB NTB consists of several organisations/programs, namely SIAP SIAGA, KONSEPSI, Mitra Samya, Mataram University, Berugak Dese, Koslata, and the Social Office. The has resulted in Governor Regulation Number 84 Year 2022 concerning the Implementing Guideline of Disaster Resilient Urban Villages (Kelurahan) and Villages. Other than promoting the establishment of Destana, this Government Regulation also provides a collective reference to map, monitor, and evaluate the implementation of Destana.
Hairul said that, now, this Government Regulation makes it very easy for anyone wanting to contribute to establishing Destana. “The SIAP SIAGA Program strategically fosters collaboration to develop the same standards and to facilitate joint evaluation and monitoring efforts. While the National Disaster Management Agency (BNPB) has a guideline on Destana, the operating aspect at the village level presents challenges. Thus, this Government Regulation is an importnat policy milestone for village-based disaster resilience development initiatives in NTB,” he explained.
Hairul added that until now, villages have conducted Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR)-related activities and programs with similar indicators as Destana. This Government Regulation will serve as a reference to guide villages on how exisiting intiatives contribute to Destana indicators. Therefore, villages will no longer consider Destana as something new and burdensome or as just a short-term project.
To quickly accelarate the achievement of Destana targets, Bappeda have expanded the involved parties, including the Community Empowerment Office, Village Government, Citizenship and Civil Registry Office (DPMDDukcapil) of NTB, and village assistants or pendamping desa. They have direct access to villages, thus providing crucial support for establishing and monitoring Destana. This multiparty team has produced a formula for Village Resilience Assessment (PKD) as an integrated instrument to evaluate and determineresilience status, and to monitor village resilience development. Supported by a disaster management information system known as the Destana Dashboard, monitoring and evaluating Destana in NTB has now become easier.
Therefore, even though as of early October 2023, there are 129 Destana not yet established, Lalu Satria and Hairul are optimistic that the 434 Destana target will be achieved, both in quantity and quality.