Climate Disaster Risk Assessment (CDRA) and Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP) provide the scientific and legal platform for climate change adaptation and mitigation in the Philippines. This APN CAPaBLE project responds to the limited technical capacity of local government units (LGUs) to comply with this requirement through collaborative capacity building. Evaluation of CDRA and LCCAP led to a National Interagency Technical and Policy Forum to formulate action plans and fast-track preparations.The initial stage of the project demonstrated collaborative advantage as a condition for mobilizing human and financial resources was enabled. Collaborative inertia set in once the technical limitations of Aurora LGUs surfaced to complete the CDRA. This mirrored the results of the institutional capacity survey, administered to 87 disaster risk reduction and management Technical Working Group (TWG) members, highlighting the LGUs limitations in data availability and functional knowledge on climate change. Thus, a shift in capacity building strategy through focused mentoring and managing LGU expectations was done. The Aurora LGUs successfully completed its CDRA and LCCAP requirements through a lengthy and arduous process. It was acknowledged that CDRA preparation has a steep learning curve and competes heavily with other multiple functions and pressing demands from the LGUs. The national interagency forum resolution suggested that the CDRA be assigned to another government agency while LGUs shift capacity development initiatives to understanding and mainstreaming scientific assessment into local plans. The project experience highlights the difficult, yet promising, path to human security development and resilience building and underscored prudence and urgency of adaptation planning at the local level.