By Jhon Aldrin Casinas
In a bid to further educate children on disaster response, the local government of Marikina City, Bureau of Fire Protection-National Capital Region, and the Department of Education-Marikina (DepEd-Marikina) forged an agreement to conduct monthly fire prevention and emergency response program among schools in the city.
Marikina Mayor Marcelino “Marcy” Teodoro, Chief Supt. Wilberto Rico Neil Kwan Tiu, BFP-NCR director, and DepEd-Marikina District Superintendent Sheryll Gayola signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) Monday which will allow the conduct of a monthly Fire Square Road Show program in schools in Marikina.
Marikina City, Kwan Tiu said, is the first local government unit to ink a pact with the BFP-NCR for the conduct of the frontline program of the bureau on fire safety and disaster awareness.
This was echoed by Teodoro, saying that the MOU is the first “in Metro Manila and the entire country signed between a local government unit and the BFP.”
The Fire Square Road Show is the banner program of the BFP which seeks to inculcate awareness among children on fire prevention emergency response.
“With this initiative, we hope that we could showcase and model in the whole country what we could do when everyone works and help each other,” Teodoro said.
According to the BFP-NCR chief, children are the most vulnerable in times of fire incidents. Children, he said, are sometimes helpless and do not know what to do during such emergency situations.
“The Fire Square Road Show serves as our vehicle to disseminate to the entire community the importance of fire safety,” Kwan Tiu said.
The Marikina City government and the BFP-NCR have also activated the city’s Special Rescue Unit (SRU). The specialized unit will be under the supervision of BFP-Marikina.
Kwan Tiu said the unit is composed of 14 highly-trained personnel from the BFP-Marikina on high and low angle rescue, retrieval, ropemanship, and other special operations.
He explained that the BFP-SRU is an elite force that is equivalent to the Special Action Force of the Philippine National Police.