Emergency Preparedness during disasters and coronavirus like pandemic situation

Introduction of Emergency Preparedness

Every individual and nation has to face some conditions that are dangerous to their existence. These situations are known as states of an Emergency Preparedness. Wikipedia defines an Emergency Preparedness as “a situation that poses an immediate risk to health, life, property or environment”. The steps that are taken to avoid the imminent danger or to prevent the worsening of the situation are collectively called as emergency preparedness. This readiness has four phases -mitigation, Emergency Preparedness, response and recovery- which are associated with spiritual and physical aspects. These courses of action ensure the safe and longtime occurrence of species.

As all living things are made up of two basic things; one is the soul and the other one is the body. The soul is something like software that guides and makes the body functional, that’s why it requires the individual-first of all- to prepare himself internally to face the inimical circumstances. It is known as spiritual readiness.

Spiritual strength- First step towards preparedness

Spiritual strength prevents a man from depression and provides a spirit. It enhances the confidence to stand strong in the face of adversity. Spirituality is majorly based on ideologies and religious values. The history of human evolution shows that for a long time it has been dependent upon divine guidance to face different disasters.  It is a fact that almost every person in today’s world is also associated with different types of religion as religious practices offer serenity to its followers. It is the very reason why Muslims offer prayers five times a day, Christian go to churches on daily basis and Hindus visit the temple to perform their religious rituals. The people having good practice of religion are more peaceful and calm than those of others. Douglas Johnston, President and founder of the International center for religion and diplomacy, identifies the attributes that religious leader and institutions have which promote peace and reconciliation.

To cut the long story short, it can be said that the first step towards tacking the emergency is to get internally brave. And for this purpose a person can practice spending more time with love ones, can go outside, can reduce distractions – e.g. social media and internet-, step out in faith and can give services to others as Jesus, Buddha, Mother Teresa, Gandhi, Abdul Star Edhhi… the list goes on. Once the individual gets ready internally he comes to know that to become misery gut is not a solution of the problem. He comes to know that it is not the end of the world and he has to grin and bear as great people do in such conditions. Therefore, after getting spiritually strengthens, he tries to make himself physically unbeatable.

Physical preparedness- Actual preparedness having some results

Physical preparedness means to use all available resources, in a calculated way, to deter the danger that is about to happen. It is the actual readiness that would have some results. If one takes the human examples for physical preparedness; one can see that nowadays humans have developed a lot to prevent themselves from emergencies. For example, man has invented vaccines for various diseases, built the dams to avoid water shortage, food storage siloes, high yielding varieties and even a Svalbard Global Seed Vault built to stand the test of time – and the global challenge of natural or man-made disasters. Moreover, every country has its own disaster management agencies like the United States has ‘The Federal Emergency Management Agency’ Pakistan has ‘National Disaster Management Authority’ and so on.

The biggest Organization ever has been established to deal with any kind of emergency to humanity is the United Nations Organization (UNO). Its different organs like Food and Agriculture Organization, World Trade Organization, World Health Organization, etc. deal in Emergency Preparedness their respective fields all over the world. The emergencies that can happen ahead are Global Warming, Food Security and Third World War need the world’s cooperation and readiness. Currently, various reports are available on the above-mentioned phenomena which have the potential to exert a great risk in the future. All of these upcoming disasters can be avoided with the effectiveness of UNO which is in the current scenario seemed to be nonfunctional in solving many socio-economic problems.

Moreover, not only humans but also animals do prepare physically for future emergencies. Animals like Chipmunk, beavers; Blue Jays, etc. are some of the animals which store food to eat later – called hoarding or caching. Animals usually cache to prepare to meet the future scarcity.

It will be an injustice to ignore mentioning the example of Japan’s Emergency Preparedness to deal with disasters. Japan has the most recorded earthquakes in the world as it is located on a highly seismic area – the so-called Pacific Ring of Fire-. It is the nation which prepared itself against the deadly earthquakes. According to the British daily broadsheet newspaper, ‘The Telegraph’ Japan is a country better prepared than anyone for quakes and tsunamis.

On the other hand, the nations and civilizations, as well as species, which had not prepared themselves for the emergencies are no more on the earth; it does not matter how strong or advanced they were. Gandhara Civilization was well organized urban society in the Indus Valley but in the present world. there is no existence of this civilization because they were not prepared to face the emergency of war and floods.

Given the above-mentioned facts, it can be said that the humans historically have been facing emergencies and who have prepared themselves against the adversities have successfully survived, but those who do not prepare, have been eliminated. If one wants to survive in the states of emergency he would have to be prepared both spiritually and physically.

Umair Akhtar

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