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Philippines: Beyond Safe Land: Why security of land tenure is crucial for the Philippines’ post-Haiyan recovery

13 August 2014 - 1:24am
Source: Oxfam Country: Philippines preview


Following the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan in November 2013, the Philippines authorities pledged to ‘build back better’ – a vision designed to ensure that affected communities were stronger and more resilient in the face of future storms. Significant efforts and some important steps have been taken by various authorities to begin fulfilling that vision.

But unless the fundamental issue of security of land tenure is addressed, poor and vulnerable people – those most affected by Typhoon Haiyan – are at risk of being left out of any lasting recovery and rehabilitation in the aftermath of the strongest storm to ever make landfall.

The government’s commitment to build back better after Typhoon Haiyan requires more than building safe houses. It also demands measures to provide land tenure security for poor and vulnerable people as part of relocation and resettlement efforts, and as part of livelihoods recovery programs.

Why security of land tenure matters

The lack of secure access to land is closely linked to poverty, especially in rural Philippines. In Region VIII alone, which includes the disaster-affected areas of Leyte and Eastern Samar, approximately 32 percent of the total population are informal settlers. This striking degree of tenure informality – almost one-third of the population – correlates with one of the highest rates of poverty in the country.

Tenure insecurity creates cycles of vulnerability to natural disasters. Displaced persons who do not have a rightful claim to land are more likely to:

• Fall into poverty, as evictions – or the threat of eviction – prevent restoration of livelihoods;

• Move back from sites of displacement or relocation to unsafe land, and;

• Form residual caseloads of landless groups without access to land and permanent housing.

Philippines: ASEAN Drums Up Support for Philippine Recovery after Yolanda

12 August 2014 - 5:22pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

12 August 2014 - A regional high-level conference will be held in Manila on August 14 at the Philippine Army Officers Club, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City, to encourage new support for the recovery and rehabilitation of Yolanda-affected communities in central Philippines.

The ASEAN High-Level Conference on Assistance for the Recovery of Yolanda-Affected Areas (ARYA) will be co-convened by ASEAN Secretary-General Le Luong Minh, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario and Presidential Assistant for Recovery and Rehabilitation Panfilo Lacson. The conference aims to drum up support for the Philippine Government’s implementation of recovery and rehabilitation plans in the Yolanda Corridor.

ASEAN Member States, members of the diplomatic community, international partners and local chief executives from the Yolanda Corridor were invited to the ARYA Conference.

According to Secretary-General Minh, who is also the ASEAN Humanitarian Assistance Coordinator, the ARYA Conference and activities would show ASEAN solidarity towards building a caring and sharing ASEAN Community.

The conference will be followed by an ASEAN Community Rebuilding Technical Workshop in which best practices on resilient recovery would be shared by ASEAN Member States which have experienced major disasters in the region and have recovered well from their effects.

A third activity, also to be held in August, is the Community Rebuilding Stakeholders’ Meeting where the capacity of local government units in the affected areas will be enhanced to formulate concrete strategies and proposals to carry forward the commitments made during the high-level conference. A more lasting and concrete support of ASEAN for the local communities involves the “Adopt-a-Municipality Project,” which aims to provide technical assistance to affected localities and help build the capacity of local governments and stakeholders for resilient recovery and sustainable development. It also aims to implement a suite of sectoral interventions to be proposed and developed by local leaders and stakeholders during the Stakeholders’ Meeting, based on their needs and commitments that would be put forward by partners during the ARYA Conference.

For media inquiries, please contact:
Romeo Arca Jr.
Senior Officer, Public Outreach and Civil Society
ASEAN Secretariat
+6221 7243372 ext. 288


Philippines: Arrest of General must break down wall of impunity for torture

12 August 2014 - 4:56pm
Source: Amnesty Country: Philippines

This morning’s arrest of a General accused of abductions and torture in the Philippines is an encouraging sign that the authorities are finally tackling a culture of impunity for serious human rights violations by the security forces, Amnesty International said.

Retired Major General Jovito Palparan, 63, was arrested by the National Bureau of Investigation and members of the armed forces at around 3am in the Santa Mesa area of the Philippines’ capital, Manila.

Often referred to as Berdugo (“the executioner” or “the butcher”) by human rights activists, he faces charges of kidnapping and illegal detention of university students in 2006.

“Today’s arrest of one of the Philippines’ most wanted alleged human rights violators must embolden the authorities to step up their efforts to bring to justice military and law enforcement officials who have reportedly abused their power through involvement in torture, enforced disappearances and extrajudicial executions,” said Rupert Abbott, Deputy Asia-Pacific Director at Amnesty International.

“It is appalling that so many officials allegedly involved in human rights violations remain at large. General Palparan’s arrest brings hope that this is changing. He and others who are suspected of having committed human rights violations must be brought to justice in fair trials – the time has come to break down the wall of impunity, brick by brick.”

During his military career, General Palparan led a unit in the Central Luzon region which was notorious for alleged human rights violations. Under his command, many activists and suspected supporters of the Communist Party of the Philippines were allegedly subjected to enforced disappearance, torture and extrajudicial execution.

In December 2011, Bulacan Regional Trial Court issued an arrest warrant for General Palparan, Lt. Col. Felipe Anotado, Jr., S/Sgt. Edgardo Osorio and M/Sgt. Rizal Hilario for the abduction of University of the Philippines students Karen Empeño and Sherlyn Cadapan on 26 June 2006, which reportedly occurred in a house in Hagonoy, Bulacan, just north of Manila.

Anotado and Osorio have voluntarily surrendered to the authorities, but Hilario remains at large.

Widespread use of torture

Amnesty International has received numerous harrowing reports of the widespread use of torture and other cruel and inhuman practices by the Philippine security forces. The organization has been campaigning for years to end impunity for torture by military and law enforcement agencies in the Philippines.

Raymond Manalo, an escaped detainee, detailed the torture he and others allegedly endured after being abducted and held in secret by men under General Palparan’s command. In a video interview with Amnesty International in 2010, he described meeting the General while in a detention camp. After escaping, Raymond Manalo survived to accuse his tormentors in court, in a case that reached the Philippines’ Supreme Court. He also brought his case to the UN Committee against Torture.

“Although it is rarely talked about, torture is endemic in the Philippines and is the country’s dark, open secret. Even though banned in national law, and while the country has signed up to international treaties on ending torture, this has often amounted to little more than paper promises,” said Rupert Abbott.

“All complaints of torture must be thoroughly and impartially investigated. The courts, the Department of Justice and government agencies mandated to ensure accountability for the abuse of power must be told that it is time to stop torture and hold torturers to account.”

Philippines: Canada Providing Humanitarian Assistance to Vulnerable Women and Children in the Philippines

12 August 2014 - 4:11pm
Source: Government of Canada Country: Canada, Philippines

August 10, 2014 – Vancouver, British Columbia – Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

Today, the Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State for Seniors, on behalf of the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, announced funding for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) for the provision of humanitarian assistance to thousands of conflict-affected women and children on Mindanao island in the Philippines.

Following decades of ongoing conflict on Mindanao, new violence in September 2013 in Zamboanga City displaced thousands of families.

“The many women and children affected by conflict are at increased risk of disease, malnutrition and danger, including child trafficking and gender-based violence,” said Minister Wong. “Canada is helping to change that by providing funding to UNICEF for activities that are addressing immediate needs, such as access to safe drinking water, improved sanitation and hygiene, and improved nutrition.”

“Children in Mindanao live in difficult conditions imposed by a conflict for which they are not responsible” said Meg French, UNICEF Canada’s Director of International Policy and Programs. “The generosity of the Government of Canada will help children and families gain better access to safe drinking water and better nutrition, and they will benefit from child-friendly spaces where they can regain a sense of normalcy in their lives and have a safe place to play.”

“Canada proudly reaffirms its commitment to save lives, alleviate suffering and maintain the dignity of those who are affected by ongoing conflict,” said Minister Paradis. “Canada remains committed to assisting the Filipino people and building on our strong relations with the Philippines.”

Minister Wong announced the funding at Pinoy Fiesta in Vancouver, the largest Filipino cultural event in Canada.

World: Global emergency overview snapshot 6 - 12 August

12 August 2014 - 1:22pm
Source: Assessment Capacities Project Country: Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Namibia, Niger, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, World, Yemen, South Sudan preview

Snapshot 6 - 12 August

Central African Republic: The CAR President Catherine Samba-Panza named a Muslim as the new Prime Minister. Renewed clashes have displaced 20,000 people in Batafango (Ouham) since July and 17,000 people in Bambari (Ouaka) since June. A total of 890 security incidents were recorded in 2014, hampering humanitarian access.

South Sudan: Government and opposition failed to reach a peace agreement and to set up a transitional government by 10 August, the deadline established in earlier agreements. Following the killing of at least six aid workers in Maban County Upper Nile State, the UN announced it was evacuating 220 staff and aid workers. The Bentiu PoC site was reportedly affected by flooding, with most of its area submerged, causing further concern over the spread of waterborne diseases.

Iraq: 200,000 people have been displaced from Sinjar District as areas were taken over by IS. New waves of violence in Kirkuk displaced up to 40,000 people. At least 45,000 Iraqis have fled into the Kurdish region of Iraq (KR-I) since 3 August, where an increase in measles cases is reported.

Updated: 12/08/2014. Next update: 19/08/2014

Global Emergency Overview Web Interface

Philippines: Innovative materials and a new beginning: MSF’s interim hospital on the Philippines typhoon shore

12 August 2014 - 6:08am
Source: Médecins Sans Frontières Country: Philippines

It has been nine months since Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines and MSF started its intervention in the country. In Guiuan, where the typhoon first struck the low lying island chain, MSF has finished the construction of a semi-permanent hospital – the Transitional Felipe Abrigo Memorial Hospital - to replace the original of that name, which was smashed and flooded beyond repair. MSF swiftly set up a tented hospital in the compound right after the typhoon to cover the urgent medical needs. It was run by MSF and provincial health staff, but it was always clear this could not last for long and a more solid construction was begun.

Upon the completion of the construction in late June, MSF facilitated the movement of patients to the new hospital which has been run by the Provincial Health Office since then. A hand-over ceremony was held on 31 July, in which MSF donated full hospital equipment as well as drugs and medical supplies for six months to the local health authority.

“Construction started in March and has been completed in just a few months, with patients and provincial health staff transferred from the tented hospital.” says Radoslav Antonov, MSF’s project coordinator in Guiuan. “We will continue to provide support here in the next few months, hoping to see this facility fully operational without MSF at the end of October.”

A small MSF team is helping with the water and electricity systems, building structure maintenance, stock and human resources management. “With this transitional facility and the hand-over to provincial health staff, access to care has been reinstated: life has already returned to normal”, says Antonov.

A transitional facility

The hospital, which will act as an interim facility until a permanent structure is completed by the Department of Health in 2016, is made of an innovative durable and recyclable composite material (75% wood fiber and 25% polypropylene) - which can adapt well to the hot, humid climate.

Around 80 outpatient consultations are carried out every day at the hospital, most of which are for respiratory tract infections and vector-borne diseases like dengue. The hospital admits 10 inpatients on an average day and the emergency room handles more than 400 cases per month, some of them from the wider region. These statistics indicate that services have returned to their pre-Haiyan level.

Ruel Navidad, father of newborn baby, Prince Wilmark, lives with his wife 60 km away from Guiuan. He was delighted with the result of their referral. “The facility and services here are very good. I am impressed by how my wife was immediately taken care of when we came here.” Currently there are up to 8 deliveries in the transitional hospital every day.

The fully-equipped operating theatre also enables medical staff to perform major surgery. 44-year-old Martina just underwent an operation on her abdomen. “I was staying in a private hospital but as soon as I knew this hospital was opened I asked to be referred here,” she says. “My house was destroyed by the typhoon and I’ve lost everything. It would cost me a fortune if I did the surgery in private hospital, but here the service is free.”

“Yolanda wiped out our health system and we hope to build it back even better than it was previously. It is an opportunity out of adversity.” says Dr. Paulyn Jean Ubial, the Assistant Secretary at the Department of Health during the hand-over ceremony.

A new phase

Dr. Lilia Daguinod, the chief of hospital with 20 years of experience in public health care, has been working side by side with MSF in the tented hospital from the start. She recalls,

“Seven days after the typhoon, the MSF team came with materials and people to build the tented hospital, and ten days later I was working in the inflatable operating theatre there, doing up to 5 caesarean sections in a day. It was really hard for all medical staff and the population.”

One of those who was with her then is MSF’s Dr. Natasha Reyes. “We know the tented hospital is not the best place to provide healthcare: it’s dusty, hot, wet, and cannot resist another storm. The transitional hospital is finished just on time before the next typhoon season comes, providing better working conditions for the staff and allowing easier care for patients.”

World: Le Canada appuie les efforts d’aide humanitaire en Asie

12 August 2014 - 4:44am
Source: Government of Canada Country: Canada, Philippines, World

La contribution du Canada au BCAH renforce la capacité du système d’aide humanitaire dans la région

Le 11 août 2014 – Vancouver, Colombie-Britannique – Affaires étrangères, Commerce et Développement Canada

Aujourd’hui, Mme Lois Brown, secrétaire parlementaire du ministre du Développement international et de la Francophonie, l’honorable Christian Paradis, accompagnée de la ministre d’État (Aînés), l’honorable Alice Wong, a annoncé que le Canada appuie les efforts déployés par le Bureau de la coordination des affaires humanitaires des Nations Unies (BCAH) en vue d’accroître la capacité du système d’aide humanitaire à intervenir en cas de crise et à répondre aux besoins urgents en Asie.

« L’Asie abrite quelque 9,6 millions de réfugiés, de personnes déplacées à l’intérieur d’un pays, de personnes récemment rapatriées et de personnes apatrides, qui vivent dans des conditions de grande privation et de péril corporel, a indiqué Mme Brown. Les conflits armés, les déplacements internes, l’insécurité alimentaire, les catastrophes naturelles et la répression exercée par l’État sont autant de facteurs qui ont alimenté bon nombre de situations d’urgence complexes en Asie. Le Canada est résolu à appuyer un système d’aide humanitaire robuste. Les partenaires comme le BCAH sont essentiels afin de veiller à ce qu’une capacité solide soit en place afin d’intervenir en cas d’urgence et que les besoins immédiats des collectivités touchées soient comblés de façon adéquate et en temps opportun. »

Le nouveau financement annoncé aujourd’hui fait en sorte que les interventions humanitaires sont fondées sur des besoins évalués, des stratégies bien définies et des priorités claires. Il aide à améliorer la prise de décisions et l’évaluation normalisée des besoins dans tous les cas d’urgence. Grâce au soutien du Canada, le BCAH collabore avec des partenaires nationaux et internationaux pour veiller à ce que l’aide humanitaire se rende aux bonnes personnes, au moment où elle est le plus nécessaire. Il aide aussi la communauté de l’aide humanitaire à se préparer à la saison des typhons de 2014.

« Notre gouvernement agit en collaborant avec d’excellentes organisations comme le BCAH, a indiqué la ministre Wong. Nous croyons que de tels partenariats sont très utiles pour alléger les souffrances et fournir du soutien aux personnes dans le besoin. »

« Ce don généreux du Canada permettra d'appuyer les gouvernements nationaux et les partenaires du domaine humanitaire au moment de jeter les bases qui assureront une réponse efficace et efficiente aux situations d'urgence dans la région, a affirmé Olivier-Lacey-Hall, dirigeant principal du bureau régional de l'Asie et du Pacifique du BCAH. Étant donné que plusieurs pays de la région pourraient éventuellement subir la prochaine supercatastrophe, l'appui du Canada, en plus d'être nécessaire, arrive à point. »

Mme Brown a fait cette annonce lors d’une table ronde tenue à Vancouver avec la ministre Wong et des représentants des diasporas asiatiques afin de discuter des difficultés actuelles en matière de développement en Asie.

« L’Asie, une région en plein essor, constitue une grande priorité du Canada, a indiqué le ministre Paradis. Le Canada aide plusieurs pays asiatiques en développement à renforcer leur capacité de faire face aux enjeux les plus pressants du continent : la réduction de la pauvreté, la consolidation des gains économiques, ainsi que le renforcement de la gouvernance, de l’inclusion politique, du développement social et de la protection de l’environnement. »

Lorsque surviennent des catastrophes naturelles, des conflits ou des situations d’insécurité alimentaire nécessitant une intervention humanitaire, le Canada répond de façon approprié, opportune et efficace afin de sauver des vies et de soulager la souffrance humaine. L’intervention canadienne est le résultat d’une coopération étroite avec les organisations humanitaires des Nations Unies, le Mouvement international de la Croix-Rouge et du Croissant-Rouge et des organisations non gouvernementales canadiennes.

Les faits en bref

Il y a plus de catastrophes naturelles en Asie-Pacifique que n’importe où ailleurs dans le monde, et plus de personnes dans cette région sont tuées ou touchées par une catastrophe naturelle qu’à quelque autre endroit.

Lorsque le typhon Haiyan a déferlé sur les Philippines le 8 novembre 2013, le Canada s’affairait déjà à mettre en place les éléments nécessaires à une intervention pangouvernementale vitale et rapide pour aider le gouvernement des Philippines.

Le programme régional de l’ACDI pour l’Asie du Sud-Est vise à réduire la pauvreté dans la région grâce à un appui aux programmes de l’ANASE en matière de croissance économique et de droits de la personne. Produits connexes


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World: Canada Supporting Humanitarian Efforts in Asia

12 August 2014 - 12:15am
Source: Government of Canada Country: Canada, Philippines, World

Canada’s contribution to OCHA is strengthening the capacity of the humanitarian system in the region

August 11, 2014 – Vancouver, British Columbia - Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

Today, Lois Brown, Parliamentary Secretary to the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, joined by the Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors), announced that Canada is supporting the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) efforts to increase the humanitarian system’s response capacity to meet emergency needs in Asia.

“Asia is home to approximately 9.6 million refugees, internally displaced people, recent returnees and people without citizenship, who live in conditions of deep deprivation and physical peril,” said PS Brown. “Armed conflict, internal displacement, food insecurity, natural disasters and state-sponsored repression have all contributed to a number of complex emergencies in Asia. Canada is committed to supporting a strong humanitarian system. Partners, such as OCHA, are crucial to ensure there is a robust capacity to respond to emergencies so that the immediate needs of affected communities are met quickly and appropriately.”

The new funding announced today is ensuring that humanitarian action is based on strong evidence, well-defined strategies and clear priorities. It is helping to improve decision-making, and make standardized needs assessments in all emergency settings. Through Canada’s support, OCHA is working with national and international partners to ensure that humanitarian assistance reaches the right people when they need it most. It is also helping the humanitarian community prepare for the 2014 typhoon season.

“Our Government is taking action in partnering with excellent organizations like the OCHA,” said Minister Wong. “We believe that partnerships like this can go a long way to alleviate suffering and provide support for those who need it most. ”

“This generous donation from Canada will allow to support national governments and humanitarian partners in laying the ground work that will ensure efficient and effective responses to emergencies in the region,” said Olivier Lacey-Hall, Head of OCHA's Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific. “Given that there are several countries in the region which could potentially suffer the next mega-disaster, this support from Canada is both timely and necessary.”

PS Brown made the announcement at a roundtable discussion held in Vancouver with Minister Wong and Asian diaspora communities to discuss the current development challenges in Asia.

“The growing Asia region is a key priority for Canada,” said Minister Paradis. “Canada helps several developing Asian nations build their capacity to address the continent’s most pressing challenges: reducing poverty; consolidating economic gains; and strengthening governance, political inclusion, social development and environmental protection.”

When natural disasters, conflicts and situations of food insecurity requiring a humanitarian response occur, Canada provides appropriate, timely and effective responses to save lives and alleviate human suffering. Canada’s response is the result of close cooperation with the United Nations humanitarian agencies, the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and non-governmental organizations.

Quick Facts

•There are more natural disasters in Asia than in any other part of the world, and more people in this region are killed or affected by natural disasters than anywhere else.

•Prior to when Typhoon Haiyan slammed into the Philippines on November 8, 2013, Canada had already put in place the pieces that made possible a rapid, life-saving, whole-of-government response in the Philippines.

•The goal of Canada's international development assistance Southeast Asia Regional Program is to reduce poverty in the region by supporting the ASEAN agenda on economic growth and improving human rights.

Philippines: Emergency Supplies Reaching Health Facilities in Philippines

11 August 2014 - 5:01pm
Source: AmeriCares Country: Philippines

Medical and humanitarian supplies helping families displaced by Typhoon Rammasun

AmeriCares emergency medical aid, power generators and other humanitarian support are reaching health facilities in the Philippines damaged by Typhoon Rammasun. When the Category 3 typhoon struck in July, it left nearly 100 dead, destroyed homes, displaced hundreds of thousands of families and left millions without power.

As damaged health facilities work to restore services amid prolonged power outages, AmeriCares has supplied four emergency power generators to extensively damaged health units in a province south of Manila. At the same time, our partner in country is distributing medicines and supplies including water purification tablets, medicines for respiratory infections, asthma, and diarrhea to health facilities in the area.

In addition, our shipment of over $400,000 of medicines and medical supplies has arrived in Manila. The shipment includes respiratory medicines, wound care supplies, pediatric medicines and baby care products to support provincial and district hospitals, as well as local health centers treating survivors. We are also supporting the purchase and distribution of basic hygiene supplies for an estimated 4,000 survivors.

Paul Gwyn Pagaran, AmeriCares emergency response and recovery coordinator in the Philippines, has been assessing the health needs in affected areas and reports significant damage to health centers and hospitals is hampering the delivery of health care in the hardest-hit areas. He is working closely with a partner organization in country to distribute medicines and supplies from AmeriCares.

“The situation has been made worse due to power outages, resulting in the absence of water and the inability to perform surgery and other medical procedures in some health facilities,” Pagaran said from the field. “With the generators supplying much needed power, our medicines and supplies will help health workers treat survivors injured by flying debris and fallen trees and sickened from exposure to rain and unsafe water.”

AmeriCares relief workers will continue to help meet survivors’ health needs in the affected regions, even as the organization continues to restore and rebuild health facilties.

Philippines: GIEWS Country Brief: Philippines 08-August-2014

11 August 2014 - 7:45am
Source: Food and Agriculture Organization Country: Philippines preview


  • Despite localized crop damage due to Typhoon Glenda, prospects for the 2014 main season rice production remained favourable

  • Record cereal imports in the 2013/14 marketing year (July/June)

  • Prices of rice continued to increase in July reaching record levels

  • Food insecurity concerns remain due to high prices and for the population affected by several typhoons/cyclones

Philippines: Canada providing support to UNICEF in Mindanao

10 August 2014 - 10:39pm
Source: Government of Canada Country: Canada, Philippines

Today’s announcement of $500,000 to UNICEF is addressing the humanitarian needs of women and children affected by conflict on Mindanao island in the Philippines.

Canada is supporting UNICEF’s operations that are improving the health, well-being and protection of children, women and their families by providing:

  • safe drinking water, latrines and hygiene kits to 15,000 people, including 8,400 children;

  • nutrition interventions, including breastfeeding support and micronutrient supplementation, to an estimated 8,400 children under the age of five and 6,600 pregnant and lactating women; and

  • emergency education services and psychosocial support for more than 10,000 schoolchildren.

Canada’s additional support in Mindanao

In 2014, Canada has contributed to additional humanitarian efforts underway in Mindanao by the International Organization of Migration (IOM) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to support conflict-affected families, particularly women and children.

Canada’s contributions are supporting IOM’s efforts to improve the coordination and management of camps for more than 25,000 internally displaced people in 10 evacuation centres and 4 temporary shelters, as well as improving conditions at temporary shelters by providing privacy partitions for approximately 4,000 families in evacuation centres.

Canada is also supporting UNHCR’s operations in Mindanao to provide protection services (such as monitoring, legal assistance, civil documentation) for approximately 67,000 conflict-affected people in southern Philippines, appropriate support to survivors of sexual violence in conflict-affected areas of southern Philippines, and technical assistance to support the Government of the Philippines to fulfill its commitments as a signatory to the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1954 Convention Relating to the Status of Stateless Persons.

Canada’s role in responding to humanitarian crises Canada helps save lives, alleviate suffering, and maintain the dignity of people in developing countries affected by conflict, natural disasters, and situations of food insecurity requiring a humanitarian response by providing funding to support the appropriate, timely, and effective response of multilateral, international and Canadian humanitarian agencies.

For more information on Canada’s response to humanitarian crises around the world, please visit the Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development website.

Philippines: NDRRMC Update SitRep No. 8 Effects of southwest monsoon (Habagat) enhanced by Typhoon "Jose" (Halong)

10 August 2014 - 9:41pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines preview


(24 Hour Public Weather Forecast 5:00 AM, 08 August 2014 and Severe Weather Bulletin No. 11 (FINAL) as of 10 :30 AM, 07 August 2014)

Typhoon "JOSE" exited the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on 07 August 2014. Southwest Monsoon affecting Northern Luzon.



• A total of 4,355 families / 15,769 persons were affected in Pangasinan and (locos Norte (Region 1), and Bataan (Region III)

• Out of the total affected, 500 families 12,500 persons are being served outside the evacuation centers in Pangasinan:

Philippines: Philippines: Typhoon Bopha (MDRPH011) - Operations update no. 7: 18 months summary

8 August 2014 - 12:12pm
Source: International Federation of Red Cross And Red Crescent Societies Country: Philippines preview

Period covered by this update:
5 December 2012 to 30 June 2014

This update provides a snapshot of progress made under the water and sanitation, shelter and National Society preparedness for response components.

Appeal target: CHF 16,267,217
Appeal coverage: 50 per cent

Appeal history:
- 21 December 2012: An emergency appeal launched for CHF 16,267,217 to assist 40,000 families (some 200,000 people) for 18 months.
- 5 December 2012: A preliminary emergency appeal issued for CHF 4,523,369 to cover 10,000 families (some 50,000 people) for 11 months.
- Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF): CHF 393,198 was allocated to support the National Society in its initial response

Summary: Philippine Red Cross (PRC), with support of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), continues to provide recovery assistance to survivors of Typhoon Bopha, some 18 months after the strongest tropical cyclone to hit Philippines in 2012. Rehabilitation of water and sanitation facilities in four schools is underway. The project entails construction or rehabilitation of sanitation blocks such as latrines and urinals, installation of boreholes (fitted with pumps), and provision of hand washing facilities. A total of 8,105 families repaired their damaged houses while 622 others have moved into their new homes after receiving assistance under this operation. Construction of 33 more core shelters is underway in Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental, while construction of 145 others in the two provinces is set to start during July The batch to start will be the last of those planned. Based on funding received towards the appeal, only 8,100 families could be provided with shelter repair assistance, only 1,200 families can be provided with core shelter assistance and only four schools can be supported with rehabilitation of water and sanitation facilities.
 Contributions towards the IFRC emergency appeal have been received from the Red Cross Red Crescent partners, government partners and institutional partners – including the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection Department (DG ECHO), the Australian, Italian and Japanese governments. The partner National Societies who have contributed are American Red Cross, Belgian Red Cross (Flanders), British Red Cross, Canadian Red Cross Society/Canadian government, Danish Red Cross/Danish government, Finnish Red Cross/Finnish government, Japanese Red Cross Society, Red Cross of Monaco, New Zealand Red Cross/New Zealand government, Swedish Red Cross, and Taiwan Red Cross Organization. A contribution was also received from the WHO’s Voluntary Emergency Relief Fund (VERF).

On behalf of the PRC, IFRC would like to thank partners and donors for their response to this appeal. Even though not all beneficiaries targeted can be assisted, owing to funding limitations, further contributions from donors are not encouraged. This is because the operation timeframe is set to end in October 2014, with no further extension envisioned. Donors are advised that while new contributions will be accepted, they would be re- allocated to the Philippines Long-Term Planning Framework (LTPF) 2012-2015 at the close of this operation.

Philippines: DA prioritizes farm-to-market roads in preparing against effects of climate change

8 August 2014 - 4:57am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

BUTUAN CITY, Aug. 8 (PIA) -- The Department of Agriculture (DA) said on Wednesday that 100 percent of the budget for farm-to-market roads today is being used to make roads at least six inches thick and five meters wide, as part of government’s climate change resiliency program.

Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said, one of the big problems of our countrymen is adequate road network and he is proud that under the Aquino administration, substandard farm-to-market roads became a thing of the past.

“Hindi na po pwede yung basta ma-grader lang ay ok na. Now 100 percent goes to concreting,” Alcala said.

He added irrigation canals have also been concreted to avoid seepage and other possible defects.

The DA’s initiative to combat the effects of climate change though is not limited to infrastructure, Alcala said.

According to the secretary, whenever there is a projection of a prolonged dry spell, the department deploys drought tolerant seeds to affected areas, and sends ‘submarine’ type seeds, or seeds that can withstand long periods of being submerged, to flooded areas.

The ‘submarine’ type palay of the DA, he added, can withstand being submerged for 14 days.

Once the sun comes out and the floodwaters subside, the ‘submarine’ type palay recovers, except when it is swamped during the flowering stage.

Also as part of the climate change resiliency program the Department has introduced grains that can be used as an alternative to palay, Alcala said.

"Among these is the adlai, which is indigenous to the Philippines," Alcala said.

He added adlai can be prepared "the way we cook rice cakes or steamed rice, and besides being an alternative to rice, it can also be used as an alternative to corn." (DA-OSEC/PIA-Caraga)

Philippines: NDRRMC Update SitRep No. 7 Effects of southwest monsoon (Habagat) enhanced by Typhoon "Jose" (Halong)

8 August 2014 - 3:30am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines preview

Typhoon ''JOSE'' exited the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on 07 August 2014. Southwest Monsoon affecting Northern Luzon.


  • A total of 4,355 families / 15,769 persons were affected in Pangasinan and Ilocos Norte (Region I) and Bataan (Region III).

  • Out of the total affected, 500 families / 2,500 persons are being served outside the evacuation centers in Pangasinan.

Philippines: Zamboanga ICRC Operational Update, July 2014

7 August 2014 - 4:32pm
Source: International Committee of the Red Cross Country: Philippines preview

Philippines: A round-up of activities carried out by the ICRC in Zamboanga

Ten months after an armed conflict broke out between a faction of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and government troops, over 40,000 people remain displaced from their homes and struggle with difficult conditions in Zamboanga City, living in evacuation centers and transitional sites or hosted by families, and still dependent on humanitarian assistance.

More than 10,000 structures, many of them houses, were damaged or burned down, adversely affecting the livelihoods of many displaced people who were trapped in poverty even before the clashes in September 2013 left them bereft of their homes and without the few assets they had possessed.
They strive to make ends meet, not knowing when they will be able to resume their normal lives under a roof of their own.

While progress has been made by the authorities in relocating the displaced to transitional sites, efforts should continue to ensure that services such as water supply and sanitation are provided before moving people to these transitional sites.

The ICRC, together with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), has been assisting thousands of displaced families since the emergency. It is committed to help the displaced restart their lives, rebuild their communities, and restore their hope and dignity

Philippines: NDRRMC Update SitRep No. 6 Effects of southwest monsoon (Habagat) enhanced by Typhoon "Jose" (Halong)

7 August 2014 - 2:35pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines preview

Typhoon ''JOSE'' is now outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR).


  • A total of 4,249 families / 15,411 persons were affected in Pangasinan (Region I) and Bataan (Region III).

  • Out of the total affected, 1,629 families / 6,495 persons were served outside the evacuation centers.

Philippines: Dengue cases down in Baguio; health office reminds public to remain vigilant

7 August 2014 - 9:32am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

By: Carlito Dar

BAGUIO CITY, Aug. 7 (PIA) - - The City Health Services Office noted a significant decrease in dengue cases but the public is advised to remain vigilant as such vector disease can be fatal if left untreated.

City Epidemiology and Surveillance Unit head Dr. Donabel Tubera, during the Dengue Forum here Wednesday, reported that from January to June, 97 dengue cases were recorded from the different hospitals and health centers in the city. This is a significant decrease compared to the 373 cases recorded during the same period last year.

Of the 97 cases, most were males (66.67 percent) . Patients’ age ranged from 2 to 63 years old with about half of themin the 19 years old and below bracket.

On per month report, January recorded the most cases with 29, followed by February and June, both registering 23 cases each.

Per barangay, Irisan had the most cases with seven, followed by Sanitary Camp North, Pinsao Proper and Gibraltar with 5 cases each, and Pacdal with four cases. Quezon Hill proper, New Lucban, Loakan Proper, Holy Ghost Extension and Bakakeng Central round -up the top ten barangay with three cases each.

Tubera pointed out that their data do not includes patients who seek consultation from private clinics and those who had home medication.

With dengue already a whole year round concern, Tubera advised the public not to be complacent and continue to be vigilant both in monitoring and in ensuring a clean home and surroundings especially of possible dengue mosquito breeding sites.

She reiterated the city health’s call for all city folks and all sector of society to work together in the fight against Dengue through collaboration of efforts in advocacy, capacity building and in ensuring that cleaning of possible dengue mosquito breeding sites is integrated in every person/family’s daily routine such as the Department of Health’s 4 O’clock habit against dengue campaign.

Tubera also reported that the city HSO is continuously working for an integrated vector management and Dengue control program, in line with its goal to reduce morbidity and mortality from Dengue infection.

The City HSO led Dengue forum was attended by representatives from government line agencies, academe, private health institutions and media. Aside from data dissemination, participants were also presented with Dengue – related researches and the government-led program and servicesin the fight against Dengue. (JDP/CCD – PIA CAR)

Philippines: Philippines: Typhoon Rammasun (4 August 2014)

7 August 2014 - 5:25am
Source: International Federation of Red Cross And Red Crescent Societies Country: Philippines preview

Philippines: Typhoon Rammasun DREF operation n° MDRPH015 - Emergency Plan of Action (EPoA)

Philippines: Philippine peace deal in jeopardy as Muslim rebels cry foul

6 August 2014 - 11:44pm
Source: Reuters - AlertNet Country: Philippines

Source: Reuters - Wed, 6 Aug 2014 08:36 GMT

By Manuel Mogato

MANILA, Aug 6 (Reuters) - An historic peace settlement in the southern Philippines is at risk of breaking down as Muslim rebels accuse the government of going back on its word over a proposed law to create self-rule for the war-torn region.

Read the full article on Reuters - AlertNet