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Philippines: France's Hollande visits typhoon-hit Philippine town

27 February 2015 - 7:19am
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: France, Philippines, World

Guiuan, Philippines | AFP | Friday 2/27/2015 - 12:01 GMT

by Hervé ASQUIN

French President Francois Hollande met survivors of one of the world's strongest typhoons in a remote Philippine coastal town on Friday, seeking to sound a global alarm on climate change ahead of a crucial UN summit.

Hollande is on a two-day trip to the Southeast Asian archipelago, regarded as a frontline state in the struggle against global warming, as part of his campaign to build diplomatic momentum ahead of the Paris summit in December.

The French president is determined to broker an historic pact in Paris to save the world from catastrophic impacts of climate change, and he went to the storm-battered Philippines to highlight those feared consequences.

"My visit is not only as president of the Republic of France, but also as a member of the international community which is mobilising to succeed at the Paris summit," Hollande said in Guiuan in the far east of the Philippines.

The small fishing community of Guiuan was one of the first towns hit when Super Typhoon Haiyan roared in from the Pacific Ocean 15 months ago with the strongest winds ever recorded on land.

Haiyan then swept across already deeply impoverished farming and fishing communities of the central Philippines, leaving more than 7,350 dead or missing in the world's deadliest natural disaster of 2013.

The Philippines endures about 20 major storms or typhoons every year but scientists say they are getting stronger and more unpredictable because of climate change, and that this will likely mean more Haiyan-like disasters.

In Guiuan, Hollande met fishermen who lost their homes during Haiyan, walked past the remains of a destroyed church and spoke at an elementary school with a roof still missing after being torn off during the typhoon.

"I'm here with you, in Guiuan, to show the entire world the devastation from the typhoon you have suffered," he said.

Forty-year-old fisherman Jessie Bisaya said he was awestruck when Hollande shook his hand next to a seaside row of shanties where he lives.

"I've never seen a foreign leader before. We are happy and honoured that he visited our town,” Bisaya told AFP from his cramped home made entirely out of tarpaulin that he shares with eight other family members.

"Life has been tough since Yolanda (Haiyan). We have not fully recovered. It can get really hot inside this house and we sleep packed like sardines."

Hollande, the first French head of state to visit the Philippines, brought a high-profile delegation with him, including French actresses Marion Cotillard and Melanie Laurent.

The Hollywood stars, as well as Orthodox Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, travelled with him to Guiuan.

  • Joint appeal -

In a joint appeal for climate change action in Manila on Thursday, Hollande and Philippine President Aquino emphasised that Filipinos had "endured an unprecedented series of extreme weather events in the last few years".

The main message in their appeal was for world leaders to secure a "universal, equitable and ambitious climate deal" in Paris to contain climate change.

Hollande presented the appeal as a show of unity that could serve as a model in the lead-up to Paris for rich and poor nations, whose divisions led to a similar effort at a UN summit in Copenhagen in 2009 ending in disarray.

The goal of the planned Paris pact, which must enter into force by 2020, is to limit warming to two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) over pre-Industrial Revolution levels.

Scientists warn that on current trends, Earth is on track for double that or more -- a recipe for catastrophic droughts, fiercer storms like Haiyan and other extreme weather events.

  • Aid -

Hollande emphasised on Thursday that a Paris accord could not succeed unless rich nations generously and adequately helped developing nations cope with climate change and build clean energy infrastructure.

After meeting Hollande, Aquino praised France's leadership in the global warming fight, emphasising that its emissions of greenhouse gases blamed for global warming were among the lowest of any developed nation.

"We, as a developing country, welcome that countries like France have emerged as global partners," Aquino said.

In Guiuan, Hollande announced 1.5 million euros ($1.7 million) in aid for the French non-government organisation ACTED to help local storm-vulnerable communities in the Philippines.

This followed a pledge from Hollande on Thursday of 50 million euros ($56 million) in loans to help prevent future weather-related disasters in the Philippines.

ha-kma/kb

© 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse

Philippines: Haiyan One Year On - Humanitarian Aid at Risk?

26 February 2015 - 5:07pm
Source: United Nations, Red Cross EU Office Country: Philippines

Overview

On 8 November 2013 the lives of millions of people in the Philippines were changed as Typhoon Haiyan made landfall in the country. The natural disaster killed 6,300 people and left 4 million displaced. The assistance of numerous local and international actors was required to restore the livelihoods of the total 16 million individuals affected. The European Commission alone allocated € 43.6 million to address the humanitarian and development impacts of the emergency.

On 7 October 2014, 11 months after Typhoon Haiyan struck, the Red Cross EU Office, VOICE and UN organised a panel discussion to consider the international community’s response to the disaster and analyse future challenges for cooperation. Hosted at the European Parliament by MEP Goerens, member of the assembly’s Development Committee, the event saw the participation of officials from the European Parliament, European Commission, United Nations, Red Cross EU Office, ICRC, ACT Alliance/ICCO and VOICE.

Philippines: While recovery efforts are expanding, acute humanitarian needs remain in affected areas

26 February 2015 - 5:04pm
Source: Red Cross EU Office Country: Philippines

In the Philippines, isolated and disadvantaged communites who survived Typhoon Haiyan are still in need of relief aid. Larger response gaps persist in Western Leyte, which requires more attention than Tacloban and surrounding municipalities. Food distributions are ongoing and remain a priority need. Food prices remain inflated and thousands of people still don’t have the financial means to buy food or have sufficient access to markets. As the emergency phase transitions into early recovery, increasing emphasis is being placed on cash for work and cash transfer programmes. The Philippines Red Cross and the IFRC operation to distribute non-food relief continues to be scaled up as thousands of survivors have lost their household possessions. Hygiene kits, mosquito nets, jerry cans and shelter kits are still distributed on a regular basis (Download Operation Update infographic 13 February 2015).

Aside, disease prevention and ensuring access to clean water, adequate sanitation and medical services are a top priority for the Red Cross. The Philippines Red Cross continues to run first aid posts and Emergency Response Unit from Canada, Norway and Japan offer basic health care in the affected areas focussing on maternity care, the treatment of typhoon-related injuries and chronic conditions e.g. high blood pressure, diabetes etc. According to the Health Cluster, diarrhoea cases have been rising in several areas of Ormoc and Leyte since 30 November. Several samples have tested positive for rotavirus. Humanitarian organisations are concerned that response capacity would be insufficient in case of outbreaks.

Support for self-recovery is fast becoming the priority

Repairing or re-building housing and helping to restore people’s lost livelihoods is a significant part of the Red Cross recovery programme. While emergency shelter materials such as tarpaulins are still needed, support for self-recovery is fast becoming the priority. The vast majority of families have already started rebuilding and repairing their homes, however most of them require help. We provide shelter and tool kits to support that process. The focus is not only on providing materials but also on technical help to ensure homes are built back safer and stronger. The Government has begun constructing bunkhouses for people living in evacuation centres or informal settlements.

The typhoon hit people’s livelihoods hard and agricultural communities were among the worst affected. Farmers, especially those who rely on coconut plantations and rice for their income, saw their crops and trees wiped out. Cash transfer programmes are vital to kick-start these economies again and enable them to buy materials to rebuild their homes and buy seeds for the next planting season, such as rice crop, which is currently happening. Unconditional cash grants supported by IFRC began on 12 December 2015 on Panay Island and Leyte province. The distribution of 50,000 cash grants is planned before the end of the year.

Philippines: Philippines: Post-typhoon resettlement plan carries risks

25 February 2015 - 10:53pm
Source: Refugees International Country: Philippines

In November 2013, the strongest typhoon on record tore a path of destruction across the central Philippines, displacing four million people. In the disaster’s wake, the government adopted an ambitious plan to relocate 200,000 households away from at-risk coastal areas and resettle them out of harm’s way. While well-intentioned as a strategy to mitigate displacement from future typhoons and climate change, observations to date suggest that without sufficient planning and safeguards, government-led resettlement is a highly risky undertaking that threatens to prolong displacement and leave affected populations more, not less, vulnerable.

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS:

•Resettling populations as a strategy to mitigate displacement from disasters is a complex process that requires substantial advance planning and resources on both the national and local level. Without sufficient planning and safeguards, policies that restrict the right of displaced populations to return pending resettlement are likely to prolong displacement, infringe on displaced persons’ legal and human rights, and increase their vulnerability.

•Governments wishing to undertake post-disaster resettlement must have in place national legal frameworks that protect the rights of those affected. They must also establish institutional arrangements for implementing resettlement that include clearly articulated roles and responsibilities between central, provincial, and local authorities.

•Where governments decide to resettle displaced people in the aftermath of disasters, international humanitarian agencies engaged in disaster response must put in place transitional shelter and protection strategies to protect internally displaced people during the resettlement process, and work with government counter-parts and development agencies to implement them.

•In post-disaster contexts, both governments and international humanitarian and development agencies must collaborate to develop more inclusive, innovative, and flexible shelter/resettlement responses that go beyond physically relocating people to empty plots of land.

Alice Thomas traveled to the Philippine islands of Leyte and Samar to assess the humanitarian response to Typhoon Haiyan in February and November 2014. She interviewed affected individuals, Philippine and donor government officials, UN officials, and representatives of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, international non-government organizations, and local civil society organizations.

Philippines: Philippines: Post-typhoon resettlement plan carries risks

25 February 2015 - 10:53pm
Source: Refugees International Country: Philippines

In November 2013, the strongest typhoon on record tore a path of destruction across the central Philippines, displacing four million people. In the disaster’s wake, the government adopted an ambitious plan to relocate 200,000 households away from at-risk coastal areas and resettle them out of harm’s way. While well-intentioned as a strategy to mitigate displacement from future typhoons and climate change, observations to date suggest that without sufficient planning and safeguards, government-led resettlement is a highly risky undertaking that threatens to prolong displacement and leave affected populations more, not less, vulnerable.

FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS:

•Resettling populations as a strategy to mitigate displacement from disasters is a complex process that requires substantial advance planning and resources on both the national and local level. Without sufficient planning and safeguards, policies that restrict the right of displaced populations to return pending resettlement are likely to prolong displacement, infringe on displaced persons’ legal and human rights, and increase their vulnerability.

•Governments wishing to undertake post-disaster resettlement must have in place national legal frameworks that protect the rights of those affected. They must also establish institutional arrangements for implementing resettlement that include clearly articulated roles and responsibilities between central, provincial, and local authorities.

•Where governments decide to resettle displaced people in the aftermath of disasters, international humanitarian agencies engaged in disaster response must put in place transitional shelter and protection strategies to protect internally displaced people during the resettlement process, and work with government counter-parts and development agencies to implement them.

•In post-disaster contexts, both governments and international humanitarian and development agencies must collaborate to develop more inclusive, innovative, and flexible shelter/resettlement responses that go beyond physically relocating people to empty plots of land.

Alice Thomas traveled to the Philippine islands of Leyte and Samar to assess the humanitarian response to Typhoon Haiyan in February and November 2014. She interviewed affected individuals, Philippine and donor government officials, UN officials, and representatives of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, international non-government organizations, and local civil society organizations.

World: Global Emergency Overview Snapshot 18–24 February 2015

24 February 2015 - 10:26am
Source: Assessment Capacities Project Country: Afghanistan, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, Ukraine, World, Yemen

Snapshot 18-24 February 2015

Myanmar: 90,000 people are now reported to have been displaced by continuing violence between government troops and multiple armed groups in Kokang, Shan state. Aid organisations have been subject to attack – seven people were wounded in two separate incidents.

Kenya: The number of cholera cases has risen in the past week to 644, from 186. The outbreak was declared in Homa Bay, Migori, and Nairobi counties on 13 February. 17 people have died, most in Migori, and there are fears that the outbreak will spread due to the lack of safe drinking water.

Nigeria: 564 cholera cases have been reported in Nigeria since January, with a fatality of rate of 8.3%. There has been a resurgence of cases in Kano and Kaduna states. In Borno state, the Nigerian military claims to have taken back Baga, Monguno, and ten other communities from Boko Haram.

Updated: 24/02/2015. Next update: 03/03/2015

Global Emergency Overview Web Interface

Philippines: Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) Operation Update (as of February 13, 2015)

23 February 2015 - 11:57pm
Source: Philippine National Red Cross Country: Philippines

Philippines: Red Cross rolls out third batch of CGI sheets for Yolanda affected provinces

23 February 2015 - 7:50am
Source: Philippine National Red Cross Country: Philippines

Manila -- The Philippine Red Cross will be sending out the third batch of corrugated galvanized iron (CGI) sheets today for four Yolanda affected provinces, namely Palawan, Iloilo, Tacloban, and Cebu to aid in the rehabilitation efforts in the said provinces. More than 152,000 CGI sheets will depart from the PRC national headquarters in Manila bound to Coron, Palawan by midnight today.

According to PRC Chairman Richard Gordon, the arrival of this new batch of CGI crates in provinces affected by Yolanda reflects the PRC’s continuous commitment to the rehabilitation efforts post Yolanda. “Our shelter program continues with the shipment of these CGI sheets which will be used to build more homes for survivors of typhoon Yolanda,” said Gordon.

Of the total 152,032 CGI sheets, 45,975 will go to Tacloban, Leyte, 46,675 to Iloilo, 17,400 will be going to Coron, Palawan, and 41,982 will be bound to Cebu. The crates will first go to Coron, Palawan, followed by Iloilo, Tacloban, and Cebu.

Philippines: The International Environmental Emergencies Response System: A Case Study of Supertyphoon Haiyan (Yolanda), The Philippines

20 February 2015 - 1:04am
Source: UN Environment Programme, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Country: Philippines

The purpose of this paper is to review the multilateral response system for environmental emergencies, using,as a case study, the response to Super Typhoon Haiyan as conducted by UNEP and United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

Philippines: ASEAN Continues Support to Philippines After Haiyan

18 February 2015 - 3:03pm
Source: Association of Southeast Asian Nations Country: Philippines

ILOILO, 18 February 2015 – The first stakeholders' meeting and inception workshop was held on 17-18 February in Iloilo City, Philippines, to launch the Adopt-a-Municipality for Resilient Recovery - a project under the ASEAN Assistance for the Recovery of Yolanda-Affected Areas in the Philippines.

The Adopt-a-Municipality project is an initiative of ASEAN in modeling a post-disaster framework for resilient recovery planning that will feed into a risk-sensitive comprehensive land use planning at the local level. The project aims to provide technical assistance to four pilot areas: municipalities of Badiangan and Mina in Iloilo Province and the municipalities of Palo and Ormoc City in Leyte Province.

According to ASEAN Deputy Secretary-General Alicia Bala, this project will enable the four pilot areas to "bounce forward" instead of "bounce back" and help operationalize the principle of "building-back-better-faster-and-safer" towards reducing vulnerability and increasing resilience to disasters. She noted that this project is also a continuing manifestation of ASEAN solidarity towards building a "caring and sharing ASEAN Community."

In her welcome remarks, Assistant Secretary Gina dela Cruz of the Philippines' Office of the Presidential Assistant on Recovery and Rehabilitation (OPARR) emphasized the importance of evidence and science-based disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation as bases of the comprehensive land use plan.

About 50 key local government officials including the mayors of the four pilot areas participated in the Inception Workshop together with representatives from OPARR, Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Foreign Affairs, Department of Social Welfare and Development, and Office of Civil Defense, which comprise the ARYA Project Steering Committee.

In November 2013, super typhoon Haiyan (local name: Yolanda) struck 12 provinces and 171 cities and municipalities in the Philippines causing the death of 6,300 people, while the injured numbered 28,689 and the missing persons, 1,061. More than a million houses were damaged of which 489,613 houses were completely destroyed. About 4 million people or 900,000 families were displaced due to the destruction brought about by storm surges, destructive winds and floods in the so-called Yolanda Corridor. ASEAN co-convened a High-Level Conference on Assistance for the Recovery of Yolanda-Affected Areas together with OPARR and Department of Foreign Affairs in August 2014.

The Adopt-a-Municipality project will be a more lasting and concrete support of ASEAN for the communities affected by Typhoon Yolanda as it will help enhance the capacity of local governments and stakeholders for resilient recovery and long-term sustainable development through comprehensive land use planning that factors in disaster and climate risks.

Philippines: P1.4-B shelter aid released for ‘Yolanda’ survivors in W. Visayas

18 February 2015 - 12:12am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has released P1.4 billion in emergency shelter assistance (ESA) to local government units (LGU) in Western Visayas for the survivors of Typhoon Yolanda.

Under the guidelines, beneficiaries of the ESA are families who have no permanent source of income or whose income is below the poverty threshold of the region; those whose houses were either partially or totally damaged and who have not received a similar assistance from other agencies or non-government institutions.

Likewise, regular employees of government and private corporations with salary below P15,000 are also eligible provided they are included in the master list of DSWD-Disaster Assistance Family Access Card (DAFAC).

DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman also upheld the DSWD stand on not including those receiving a salary of more than P15,000 because they have the capacity to rebuild their houses.

On the other hand, those living in danger zones are also not included as beneficiaries, because they are being assisted by the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC).

A total of P10,000 shall be given to families whose houses were partially damaged, while P30,000 will go to those whose houses were totally destroyed.

Breakdown

In the province of Aklan, the municipality of Libacao received P109.6 million for the 3,655 families with totally damaged houses.

In the province of Antique, the town of Culasi got P109.4 million for the 7,228 families with totally and partially damaged houses.

In the province of Capiz, the town of Panay received P173.6 million for 5,787 families with totally damaged houses; Pontevedra got P43.5 million for 4,357 families with partially damaged houses; while Tapaz got P69.4 million for 6,311 families with partially damaged houses.

In the province of Iloilo, the town of Sara received P240.4 million for 8,015 families with totally damaged houses; Lambunao, P72.5 million for 7,250 families with totally damaged houses; Ajuy, P9 million for 300 families with totally damaged houses; Concepcion, P18 million for 600 families with totally damaged houses; and Estancia, P9 million for 300 families with totally damaged houses.

In the province of Negros Occidental, P93.8 million was released for 7,178 beneficiaries with both totally and partially damaged houses .

DSWD urged the other LGUs which have not submitted their supporting documents to complete these so that the Department could immediately download the ESA funds to them. In Iloilo, there are still 14 towns which have not submitted their validated list and documents; four in Aklan; one in Antique; three in Capiz; and four in Negros Occidental.

Dialogue

Meanwhile, DSWD Field Office-VI Director Ma. Evelyn B. Macapobre held a dialogue last week with members of Bayan Muna and Pamanggas – organizations of farmers and fisherfolk – to explain the guidelines on the implementation of ESA.

During the dialogue, Macapobre responded to the issues raised by the two organizations. These included the total scrapping of Memorandum Circular Number 24 or the Guidelines for ESA Implementation in ‘Yolanda’-Affected Areas, swift and immediate release of ESA to all victims of ‘Yolanda,’ additional funds for all ‘Yolanda victims,’ and transparency in the identification of beneficiaries.

Macapobre clarified that all services of the DSWD have eligibility requirements which must be followed.

The implementation guidelines of ESA for the ‘Yolanda’ survivors in all affected areas are spelled out in MC 24, which is the basis for the release of the cash aid and which will be used by the Commission on Audit (COA) in post-auditing releases.

“The Field Office is dependent on how soon the LGUs can submit to us the required documents as specified in MC 24, and [how] fast the funds are released to us,” Macapobre further explained.

Regarding the demand for additional funds for all ‘Yolanda’ survivors, the militant groups said they do not only mean more funds to accommodate the affected families who are not included in the first list submitted; they also want to avail all other DSWD services.

The Director encouraged the protesters to submit their list to their local social welfare and development office so that it can be included in the validation.

DSWD will meet all the six governors in Western Visayas on February 24 to ask for their help in monitoring the LGUs under them in coming up with the validated and official list of affected families.

“This final list should be submitted to DSWD-Field Office [VI] on or before March 31 as we intend to consolidate the submission and forward an additional fund request to the DSWD Central Office by April 10,” Dir. Macapobre added.

On the transparency issue in identifying legitimate beneficiaries, Macapobre reminded Bayan Muna and Pamanggas members that it was the LGUs which provided their lists of qualified recipients to DSWD. ###

Philippines: P1.4-B shelter aid released for ‘Yolanda’ survivors in W. Visayas

18 February 2015 - 12:12am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has released P1.4 billion in emergency shelter assistance (ESA) to local government units (LGU) in Western Visayas for the survivors of Typhoon Yolanda.

Under the guidelines, beneficiaries of the ESA are families who have no permanent source of income or whose income is below the poverty threshold of the region; those whose houses were either partially or totally damaged and who have not received a similar assistance from other agencies or non-government institutions.

Likewise, regular employees of government and private corporations with salary below P15,000 are also eligible provided they are included in the master list of DSWD-Disaster Assistance Family Access Card (DAFAC).

DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman also upheld the DSWD stand on not including those receiving a salary of more than P15,000 because they have the capacity to rebuild their houses.

On the other hand, those living in danger zones are also not included as beneficiaries, because they are being assisted by the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC).

A total of P10,000 shall be given to families whose houses were partially damaged, while P30,000 will go to those whose houses were totally destroyed.

Breakdown

In the province of Aklan, the municipality of Libacao received P109.6 million for the 3,655 families with totally damaged houses.

In the province of Antique, the town of Culasi got P109.4 million for the 7,228 families with totally and partially damaged houses.

In the province of Capiz, the town of Panay received P173.6 million for 5,787 families with totally damaged houses; Pontevedra got P43.5 million for 4,357 families with partially damaged houses; while Tapaz got P69.4 million for 6,311 families with partially damaged houses.

In the province of Iloilo, the town of Sara received P240.4 million for 8,015 families with totally damaged houses; Lambunao, P72.5 million for 7,250 families with totally damaged houses; Ajuy, P9 million for 300 families with totally damaged houses; Concepcion, P18 million for 600 families with totally damaged houses; and Estancia, P9 million for 300 families with totally damaged houses.

In the province of Negros Occidental, P93.8 million was released for 7,178 beneficiaries with both totally and partially damaged houses .

DSWD urged the other LGUs which have not submitted their supporting documents to complete these so that the Department could immediately download the ESA funds to them. In Iloilo, there are still 14 towns which have not submitted their validated list and documents; four in Aklan; one in Antique; three in Capiz; and four in Negros Occidental.

Dialogue

Meanwhile, DSWD Field Office-VI Director Ma. Evelyn B. Macapobre held a dialogue last week with members of Bayan Muna and Pamanggas – organizations of farmers and fisherfolk – to explain the guidelines on the implementation of ESA.

During the dialogue, Macapobre responded to the issues raised by the two organizations. These included the total scrapping of Memorandum Circular Number 24 or the Guidelines for ESA Implementation in ‘Yolanda’-Affected Areas, swift and immediate release of ESA to all victims of ‘Yolanda,’ additional funds for all ‘Yolanda victims,’ and transparency in the identification of beneficiaries.

Macapobre clarified that all services of the DSWD have eligibility requirements which must be followed.

The implementation guidelines of ESA for the ‘Yolanda’ survivors in all affected areas are spelled out in MC 24, which is the basis for the release of the cash aid and which will be used by the Commission on Audit (COA) in post-auditing releases.

“The Field Office is dependent on how soon the LGUs can submit to us the required documents as specified in MC 24, and [how] fast the funds are released to us,” Macapobre further explained.

Regarding the demand for additional funds for all ‘Yolanda’ survivors, the militant groups said they do not only mean more funds to accommodate the affected families who are not included in the first list submitted; they also want to avail all other DSWD services.

The Director encouraged the protesters to submit their list to their local social welfare and development office so that it can be included in the validation.

DSWD will meet all the six governors in Western Visayas on February 24 to ask for their help in monitoring the LGUs under them in coming up with the validated and official list of affected families.

“This final list should be submitted to DSWD-Field Office [VI] on or before March 31 as we intend to consolidate the submission and forward an additional fund request to the DSWD Central Office by April 10,” Dir. Macapobre added.

On the transparency issue in identifying legitimate beneficiaries, Macapobre reminded Bayan Muna and Pamanggas members that it was the LGUs which provided their lists of qualified recipients to DSWD. ###

Philippines: An Inside Look into USPACOM Response to Super Typhoon Haiyan

17 February 2015 - 10:03pm
Source: Center for Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance Country: Philippines, United States of America

Executive Summary

Many humanitarian and military leaders noted that civil-military coordination during the Haiyan response in November-December 2013 was some of the best they had seen. The United States Agency for International Development Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA), the Department of Defense (DOD) United States Pacific Command (USPACOM) forces, and the US Embassy, Philippines demonstrated clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities as evidenced by their effective coordination. The United States Government (USG) response entities provided assistance reflecting their unique capabilities appropriately scaled throughout the response phase.

The USAID/ OFDA Disaster Assessment Response Team (DART) team coordinated with the humanitarian community. The team validated and transmitted requests for military assistance to the DOD responders on the ground. With the exception of a few days of water production in Tacloban, DOD mostly focused on large-scale operations using their unique capabilities to deliver “wholesale” transportation and logistics support. USAID/OFDA was one of the first donors to the World Food Program (WFP), enabling its role as the lead coordinator of the United Nations (UN) logistics and emergency telecommunications clusters and co-lead of the food security cluster with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization.

Philippines: An Inside Look into USPACOM Response to Super Typhoon Haiyan

17 February 2015 - 10:03pm
Source: Center for Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance Country: Philippines, United States of America

Executive Summary

Many humanitarian and military leaders noted that civil-military coordination during the Haiyan response in November-December 2013 was some of the best they had seen. The United States Agency for International Development Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA), the Department of Defense (DOD) United States Pacific Command (USPACOM) forces, and the US Embassy, Philippines demonstrated clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities as evidenced by their effective coordination. The United States Government (USG) response entities provided assistance reflecting their unique capabilities appropriately scaled throughout the response phase.

The USAID/ OFDA Disaster Assessment Response Team (DART) team coordinated with the humanitarian community. The team validated and transmitted requests for military assistance to the DOD responders on the ground. With the exception of a few days of water production in Tacloban, DOD mostly focused on large-scale operations using their unique capabilities to deliver “wholesale” transportation and logistics support. USAID/OFDA was one of the first donors to the World Food Program (WFP), enabling its role as the lead coordinator of the United Nations (UN) logistics and emergency telecommunications clusters and co-lead of the food security cluster with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization.

Philippines: An inside look into USPACOM response to Super Typhoon Haiyan, February 2015

17 February 2015 - 2:01pm
Source: Center for Excellence in Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance Country: Philippines

Executive Summary

Many humanitarian and military leaders noted that civil-military coordination during the Haiyan response in November-December 2013 was some of the best they had seen. The United States Agency for International Development Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/ OFDA), the Department of Defense (DOD) United States Pacific Command (USPACOM) forces, and the US Embassy, Philippines demonstrated clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities as evidenced by their effective coordination. The United States Government (USG) response entities provided assistance reflecting their unique capabilities appropriately scaled throughout the response phase.

The USAID/ OFDA Disaster Assessment Response Team (DART) team coordinated with the humanitarian community. The team validated and transmitted requests for military assistance to the DOD responders on the ground. With the exception of a few days of water production in Tacloban, DOD mostly focused on large-scale operations using their unique capabilities to deliver “wholesale” transportation and logistics support. USAID/OFDA was one of the first donors to the World Food Program (WFP), enabling its role as the lead coordinator of the United Nations (UN) logistics and emergency telecommunications clusters and co-lead of the food security cluster with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization.

Several communication avenues for the responders and the affected were utilized, providing many alternative ways to coordinate while major communication infrastructures were down. Mainstream media, social media, and citizen journalism played a significant role in informing responders of the appropriate courses of action for the employment of USG resources. Key lessons learned from previous disasters improved the speed and quality of overall US interagency coordination. Most notably, personnel with previous disaster response experience who had personal connections with other major players in the relief efforts considerably expedited interagency and transnational relief efforts. The informal professional networks among relief workers built during common training and exercises greatly facilitated the trust needed for effective and efficient cooperation, particularly in the early response phase.

Many noted the impressive demonstration of Haiyan lessons learned put into action in the recent response to Typhoon Hagupit that began as Category 5 before weakening into Category 3 when it hit the Philippines in December 2014. The resiliency of the Filipino spirit continues to impress domestic and foreign media. The commitment of foreign assisting actors who came to the aid of the Philippines in Haiyan clearly demonstrated the increasingly globalized nature of disaster response.

In the coming years, the challenge remains to find more innovative ways to increase investment in disaster preparedness and to better integrate and leverage local capabilities and capacities with international response.

World: Global Emergency Overview Snapshot 11–17 February 2015

17 February 2015 - 10:41am
Source: Assessment Capacities Project Country: Afghanistan, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, China, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, Ukraine, World, Yemen

Snapshot 11–17 February 2015

Myanmar: Fighting between the Myanmar army and the MNDAA, an insurgent group in the Kokang area of Shan state, displaced tens of thousands of people. Some fled into central Myanmar, while between 30,000 and 50,000 are thought to have crossed into Nansan, Yunnan province, China.

Afghanistan: 32,000 undocumented Afghans have spontaneously returned from Pakistan, after security incidents in the country have led to a military crackdown; another 2,000 people have been deported to Afghanistan. This is 130% more people than returned in all of 2014.

DRC: 1,170 cases of cholera have been recorded in Katanga province so far in 2015, with 24 deaths.

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World: Asia-Pacific Humanitarian Bulletin July - December 2014

11 February 2015 - 12:23am
Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Country: Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, India, Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Myanmar, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Timor-Leste, World

NATURAL DISASTERS AND CONFLICTS IN ASIA-PACIFIC

FEWER LIVES LOST

In 2014, Asia and the Pacific experienced 126 natural disasters, which affected a total of 85 million people. Significantly, casualties were a quarter of what they were in 2013, with nearly 4,000 people killed by disasters in the region. Floods and landslides were the primary causes of death according to the Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED).

There were fewer large-scale disaster events in Asia and the Pacific in 2014. Although hazards including floods and approaching storms put people at risk, the absence of severe catastrophes meant that loss of life from natural disasters were much lower. In many places, improved preparedness measures and early warning systems, as well as larger evacuations, consistently moved people to safety and reduced the number of casualties.

Overall, China, India and the Philippines experienced the greatest number of disasters in 2014 with a large amount of people exposed to a variety of hazards. Cyclone Hudhud struck India’s east coast as a Category 4 storm in early October with wind speeds of over 190 km/h. Despite its destructive force, early evacuations of around half a million people kept the number of casualties at a comparatively low 84. Similarly, one of the largest peace-time evacuations of people from Typhoon Hagupit in the Philippines prevented major losses with a total of 18 deaths. The typhoon made landfall as a Category 3 storm, weaker than Super Typhoon Haiyan that killed more than 6,000 people the year before. A total of nine typhoons hit the Philippines in 2014.

Although 2014 saw fewer incidences, the overall disaster risk situation has not changed. Major floods in India, particularly around Jammu and Kashmir, China and Indonesia once again affected almost 23 million people. Large landslides in Nepal caused 484 deaths and affected more than 185,000 people. At the same time, China experienced a major drought that affected 27.5 million people.

Philippines: Philippines: Long-term recovery challenges remain in the wake of massive displacement

10 February 2015 - 2:03pm
Source: Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre Country: Philippines

Millions are newly displaced each year in the Philippines, mainly by natural hazard-related disasters such as typhoon and floods, but also by conflict and violence most of which is concentrated in the southern island group of Mindanao. The number of people newly displaced fell by more than half, from 7.5 million in 2013 to around three million in 2014. The absence of a major disaster of equal severity to Haiyan – the super-typhoon which devastated the region in 2013 – largely explains this drop.

As of February 2015, IDMC estimated that nearly half a million people were living in displacement. Around 80 per cent had been displaced by disasters while an estimated 95,000 had fled conflict and violence in Mindanao. The total number of people displaced by conflict and violence reached its lowest level since 2011. A reduction in the number and intensity of fighting incidents largely explains this decline.

The government has made considerable efforts to address the immediate needs of those displaced by conflict and natural hazard-related disasters. In the wake of typhoon Haiyan, a massive response by the government and the international community provided essential support to avert a large-scale humanitarian crisis. Little information is available however about progress towards solutions for the approximately four million people who had returned home following Typhoon Haiyan. Housing and livelihood needs in Haiyan-affected areas remain considerable, with few having managed to complete their recovery.

Delays in reconstruction and restrictions placed on return also slowed progress towards solutions for those displaced by the 2013 conflict in Zamboanga city. Poor donor response to the Zamboanga Action Plan (ZAP), with only 47 per cent of the $12.8 million requested covered by the time the ZAP closed in August 2014, and limited engagement from development actors, seriously hampered the international community’s capacity to respond and the search for durable solutions. The adoption in October 2014 by the Humanitarian Country Team (HCT) of a durable solution strategy for IDPs in the Mindanao city of Zamboanga has laid the basis for continued international involvement and more attention being paid to long-term solutions, in particular with regards to the right to adequate housing for the most vulnerable IDPs.

The signing in March 2014 of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) put an end to a 40 year-old conflict, raising hope of sustained peace and opportunities to better address internal displacement in the country. Also, a revised version of the IDP bill, previously vetoed by the president in 2013, made good progress in Congress with its adoption by the lower house in August 2014.

With the humanitarian phase now officially declared over following Haiyan and the Zamboanga conflict, the government and the international community must ensure that continued attention is paid the needs of thousands of families still displaced and who have not yet achieved durable solutions. The planned relocation of over 200,000 families living in unsafe coastal areas will be another major challenge given the lack of available land and poor capacity and resources at the local level.

World: Global Emergency Overview Snapshot 4-10 February 2015

10 February 2015 - 10:41am
Source: Assessment Capacities Project Country: Afghanistan, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, World, Yemen

Snapshot 4–10 February 2015

Guinea: An increase in Ebola case numbers has been reported for the second consecutive week. Resistance to the response remains high in Forecariah, worst affected by the outbreak; though ten prefectures have reported at least one incident of resistance. Clashes between armed forces and the community were reported in Matoto, Conakry.

Niger and Cameroon: The past week has seen a further deterioration in the crisis related to Boko Haram, as the Nigeria-based group carried out its first attacks in Niger – in Diffa region, where most refugees are living – as well as further attacks in the Far North region of Cameroon.

Updated: 10/02/2015. Next update: 17/02/2015

Global Emergency Overview Web Interface

World: Global Emergency Overview Snapshot 4-10 February 2015

10 February 2015 - 10:41am
Source: Assessment Capacities Project Country: Afghanistan, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Namibia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, World, Yemen

Snapshot 4–10 February 2015

Guinea: An increase in Ebola case numbers has been reported for the second consecutive week. Resistance to the response remains high in Forecariah, worst affected by the outbreak; though ten prefectures have reported at least one incident of resistance. Clashes between armed forces and the community were reported in Matoto, Conakry.

Niger and Cameroon: The past week has seen a further deterioration in the crisis related to Boko Haram, as the Nigeria-based group carried out its first attacks in Niger – in Diffa region, where most refugees are living – as well as further attacks in the Far North region of Cameroon.

Updated: 10/02/2015. Next update: 17/02/2015

Global Emergency Overview Web Interface