This webinar will generate discussion on how the region is coping with the dual challenges of a pandemic and the threat of natural hazards, while also preparing for simultaneous disasters in the future. As the world grapples with COVID-19, the Southeast Asian region remains highly vulnerable to transboundary disasters. With the advent of the monsoon season, the overlapping effects of a pandemic and a natural hazard could compound socio-economic vulnerabilities and affect the way humanitarian assistance is carried out. It will discuss:
(i) Challenges faced by the humanitarian sector during COVID-19
(ii) Potential solutions and initiatives to help alleviate these challenges
(iii) Strengthening partnerships to facilitate these new modalities
About the Speakers
Tan Sri Dr Jemilah Mahmood is currently the Special Advisor to the Prime Minister of Malaysia on Public Health, and began her mandate in April 2020. She is also a member of the Government of Malaysia’s Economic Action Council and is actively engaged in the COVID-19 response.Prior to this, she was the Under Secretary General for Partnerships at the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) in January 2016. Her portfolio involves partnership and resource development, strategy, policy, knowledge, as well as global communications. Under her leadership, IFRC has also developed a global innovation including a futures and foresight unit and pioneered the use of Islamic social finance to address humanitarian crises.
Before joining the IFRC, Dr. Mahmood was the Chief of the World Humanitarian Summit secretariat at the United Nations in New York. She is well known as the founder of MERCY Malaysia, which she led from 1999-2009, and her previous appointments include Chief of the Humanitarian Response Branch at UNFPA; Senior Fellow at Khazanah Nasional Berhad in Malaysia’s Khazanah Research and Investment Strategy Division, and Senior Visiting Research Fellow at the Humanitarian Futures Programme at Kings College in London. From 2006-2009, she was one of 16 members appointed by United Nations Secretary-General to the Advisory Group of the Central Emergency Response Fund.
Dr. Mahmood has held many Board positions in NGOs and INGOs and is the recipient of numerous national and international awards for her contribution to civil society and work in support of marginalized communities, including the first Isa Award for Services to Humanity from the Kingdom of Bahrain. She was recently awarded the ASEAN Prize in 2019. Currently, she is a Civil Society Governor of the Commonwealth Foundation, and is a board member of the Global Responsible Finance Institute. She is also a member of the United Nations Disaster Assessment and Coordination team (UNDAC) since 2004. In 2019, she was appointed to the Board of the National University of Malaysia.
Dr Mahmood graduated as a Doctor of Medicine (MD) from the National University of Malaysia, has a Masters in Obstetrics & Gynaecology from the same university and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists United Kingdom. She also completed executive education at the International Management and Development Centre, IMD Lausanne.
Mr Masahiro Ishizeki is an expert in development and humanitarian aid with nearly 20 years of hands-on experience through various roles across the NGO sector. With knowledge in project mapping, feasibility studies, monitoring and evaluation to project-organisational management, Ishizeki shares his expertise with his team, partners and beneficiaries in more than 10 countries spanning across the Asia-Pacific. He joined Mercy Relief in 2012. In his current role as Head of International Programmes (IP), Ishizeki is leading the IP team whilst working for programme development and implementation in Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar and Japan.
Originally from Chiba, Japan, he is a graduate of National University of Hokkaido’s College of Law in Sapporo, Japan (BA International Political Science, 1988) as well as of the University of Philippines’ College of Social Work & Community Development (MA Community Development, 1997)
Dr Alistair D. B. Cook is Coordinator of the Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Programme and Senior Fellow at the Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS Centre), S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore.His research interests focus on the Asia-Pacific, and Myanmar in particular on humanitarian affairs, disaster governance, foreign policy and regional cooperation. He has taught undergraduate, graduate and professional development courses at Purdue University, University of Melbourne, Deakin University, Nanyang Technological University, Australian National University, Singapore Civil Defence Academy and SAFTI.