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AFRICOM Supports Disaster Preparedness Initiative
Building on lessons learned during Operation United Assistance, an initiative is underway in West Africa to increase the capacity of governments to respond to emergencies.
C. Patricia Alsup, left, chargé d’affairs, United States Embassy – Accra, greets Lt. Col. Sueann Ramsey, chief of health force protection for U.S. Africa Command, prior to the commissioning of the Republic of Ghana National Emergency Operations Center in Accra July 13, 2015.
3 photos: AFRICOM Supports Disaster Preparedness Initiative (1) of (3)
Photo 1 of 3: C. Patricia Alsup, left, chargé d’affairs, United States Embassy – Accra, greets Lt. Col. Sueann Ramsey, chief of health force protection for U.S. Africa Command, prior to the commissioning of the Republic of Ghana National Emergency Operations Center in Accra July 13, 2015. Download full-resolution version
Dr. Barbara Sotirin, deputy director for programs at U.S. Africa Command, provides remarks during the opening ceremony for the the West Africa Disaster Preparedness Initiative at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center in Accra, Ghana July 13, 2015.
3 photos: AFRICOM Supports Disaster Preparedness Initiative (2) of (3)
Photo 2 of 3: Dr. Barbara Sotirin, deputy director for programs at U.S. Africa Command, provides remarks during the opening ceremony for the the West Africa Disaster Preparedness Initiative at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center in Accra, Ghana July 13, 2015. Download full-resolution version
Erik Threet, left, disaster preparedness program manager with U.S. Africa Command, presents an award for service to Sir Ebeneezer Kofi Portuphy, former national coordinator for Ghana's National Disaster Management Organization, in Accra, Ghana July 13, 2015.
3 photos: AFRICOM Supports Disaster Preparedness Initiative (3) of (3)
Photo 3 of 3: Erik Threet, left, disaster preparedness program manager with U.S. Africa Command, presents an award for service to Sir Ebeneezer Kofi Portuphy, former national coordinator for Ghana's National Disaster Management Organization, in Accra, Ghana July 13, 2015. Download full-resolution version
C. Patricia Alsup, left, chargé d’affairs, United States Embassy – Accra, greets Lt. Col. Sueann Ramsey, chief of health force protection for U.S. Africa Command, prior to the commissioning of the Republic of Ghana National Emergency Operations Center in Accra July 13, 2015.
Dr. Barbara Sotirin, deputy director for programs at U.S. Africa Command, provides remarks during the opening ceremony for the the West Africa Disaster Preparedness Initiative at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center in Accra, Ghana July 13, 2015.
Erik Threet, left, disaster preparedness program manager with U.S. Africa Command, presents an award for service to Sir Ebeneezer Kofi Portuphy, former national coordinator for Ghana's National Disaster Management Organization, in Accra, Ghana July 13, 2015.

ACCRA, Ghana -- Representatives from 17 African partner nations marked the start of the West Africa Disaster Preparedness Initiative and the opening of a national emergency operations center in Accra, Ghana, July 13.

West Africa Preparedness Initiative

Led by regional organizations with support from the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) Operation United Assistance Transition Disaster Preparedness Project, the initiative is designed to build upon lessons learned during the international response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

The initiative will consist of training sessions and discussions on disaster preparedness and will build on the lessons learned during the international response to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

Dr. Barbara Sotirin, deputy director for programs with AFRICOM, said the initiative is part of the command’s efforts to “continue assisting African nations with disaster preparedness and response planning.”

Organizations leading the initiative include the Economic Community of West African States, the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre, and the Republic of Ghana National Disaster Management Organization.

Participating nations include Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Chad, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.

Republic of Ghana National Emergency Operations Center

Officials from 15 West African nations, the U.S. and international organizations also marked the opening of the Republic of Ghana National Emergency Response Operations Center. Guardsmen with the North Dakota National Guard provided engineer support during construction as part of the U.S. Africa Command State Partnership Program.

The center provides Ghana with a national-level venue to coordinate the government’s response to emergencies.

For more information, read the full release here.

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