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Building Resilience to Floods and Rain-Induced Landslides in Barangay Napaan

Submitted by Jose Arianne Go... 13th October 2020 13:37


Barangay Napaan, Malay, Aklan is located in the northwestern tip of Panay Island in Central Philippines and is the biggest of Malay’s 17 barangays (villages). The village center where most of the population lives is an upland valley located in the confluence of Napaan River and Kamaigin Creek. These rivers swell quickly, even with small amount of rain, causing flash floods. Steep slopes and reduced forest cover have also made the village prone to rain-induced landslides. The rapid-onset of floods and rain-induced landslides pose serious threats to the lives, livelihoods and assets of residents.   

The Napaan riverbed is shallow and silted from slope erosion and disturbances from upland activities. Previous flood control infrastructure (cement wall) did not prevent flood events. Photo Credit: PRRM 

Despite the high level of risks the community is exposed tothere are no facilities for fire, police, evacuation, protection and warning services in Napaan. Displaced and affected families use the barangay hall for evacuation and safety. Unfortunately, the barangay hall is located in a flood-prone area that is regularly flooded to a depth of one-meter. This often leaves the community completely isolated and cutoff from any emergency response and assistance during severe flooding events. The town’s emergency warning and emergency aid assistance does not reach vulnerable households in Napaan on time, due to the severity of the flooding and the distance of the community from the town center. A multipurpose emergency evacuation facility will address the vital need for a safe emergency facility, and slope protection measures will reduce the impact of flash floods, erosion and landslides on the community. 

This page presents the project called “Building Resilience to Floods and Rain-Induced Landslides in Barangay Napaan”, identified and developed by the community.


The community-led project (CLP) places urban poor communities as active and informed participants at the centre of the process of resilience planning, from assessment to implementationand gives them a role in the maintenance of community-led projectsThrough the Community Resilience Planning (CRP) process, people from poor and vulnerable groups work together with other stakeholders from government and the private sector to collect and analyse data about how hazards impact vulnerable groups and livelihoods and design and agree resilience solutions.  The Community Resilience Planning process requires strong social mobilization, communication and engagement with all stakeholders. It also requires the creation of the Community Stakeholder Group (CSG), an institutional and multi-sectoral mechanism for transparent and effective information sharing, decision-making and implementation of community decisions and actions. 


Source: Project Methodology, ADB-RETA 9329


Community-Led Resilience Project

Through the CRP process, the community identified and developed the project called “Building Resilience to Floods and Rain-Induced Landslides in Barangay Napaan”. It will strengthen community resilience to the impacts of climate-related hazards such as floods, flash floods and rain-induced landslides through nature-based solutions and the construction of community multi-purpose evacuation center.     

The impact of floods and rain-induced landslides will be reduced by stabilizing the river bank through the use of coco-nets and the planting of indigenous shrubs and trees Gabions will reduce the run-off and velocity of water in critical sections. Erosion and landslide control measures will help protect the multi-purpose evacuation center and areas near the rivers that pose landslide concerns for houses and other structures located near the river.  

Community members looking for the safest possible land site for the Multi-Purpose Evacuation Center 
Photo Credit: PRRM 


The design of multi-purpose evacuation center and nature-based protection measures through the use of coco-net matting for erosion control is an innovation that promotes community resilience by a creating safe emergency evacuation facility for the community, and reducing the impacts of flash floods, erosion and landslides. The project design takes into account the projected increase in rainfall and flood levels due to climate change in Malay over the next 5 decades as informed by climate change projections. During the next 50 years, rainfall in Malay is expected to increase by 22% to 30% from current levels in the months of December to February and this will increase the frequency and severity of flooding and landslides in the area (PAGASA, 2018).  

Slope Protection Design 
Photo Credit: PRRM 

The multi-purpose evacuation center will be equipped with training facilities, an early warning system, an emergency command center, and a nursery. There will also be space to support livelihoods and income generation activities for vulnerable households. It will promotorganic farming and livestock raising, and the growing of native trees and nature-based solutions. The center will be operated and managed by members of the community and will be linked to the community’s early warning system and evacuation plan. 

Gender and social inclusion

Gendered designs help in addressing gendered social norms that discriminate against women. The design of the evacuation center incorporates kitchen and laundry facilities and child-minding areas within the center (not outside) to help address the needs of the community during evacuation. There are also separate comfort rooms and wash areas designated for women and men to increase the security of women and children during high-stress situations. During crisis, the center can promote the equitable sharing of unpaid household care such as care of children and elderly people, and cooking etc., between women and men. It is also critical to ensure women and girls are not exposed to gender-based violence when in and getting to and from the center. The evacuation center will be used as a livelihoods center to ensure the continuity of income for poorer households during times of crisis and evacuation. 

Issues and Challenges

Implementation of the community-led project (CLP) encountered several challenges including the need for quick action to address the community’s urgent need to tackle flash floods and landslides. There were very few safe sites for the location of the multi-purpose evacuation center and community capacity to manage and maintain the centre will need to be strengthened. The municipality will also support the community in improving its knowledge, skills and capacities in disaster risk reduction, early warning and early action and in operating a community emergency command system. Local government fundinwill be institutionalized through the annual budget to support the ongoing sustainability of the center’s maintenance and operations. 

Expected Results and Impact of the Project

The Barangay Napaan Multi-Purpose Evacuation Center will significantly increase the readiness of the community to respond to flash floodsThe center will also serve as a training venue for livelihood seminars, skills-training, and other activitiesThe income from rentals will be used to cover the cost of the center’s upkeep, operations and maintenance. With an expected rental revenue of P1,000 per activity, the center can earn up to P4,000.00 per month, which is enough to cover operational costs.  Measures to stabilize the riverbanks will reduce the loss and damage experienced by the community caused by flooding and landslides made worse by climate change.    

Barangay Napaan Community-Managed Multi-Purpose Evacuation Center. Photo Credit: PRRM

Further Resources