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Philippines: In the Shadow of the Storm: Getting recovery right one year after typhoon Haiyan

6 November 2014 - 7:31am
Source: Oxfam Country: Philippines

Typhoon Haiyan – One year on and 1 million people still living in dangerous conditions as typhoon season hits

One year after Haiyan struck the Philippines nearly 1 million people made homeless are still living in makeshift shelters and are dangerously exposed to future typhoons, said international aid agency Oxfam.

There are 205,000 families living in ‘unsafe’ areas and only 1 percent of houses are built, said a new report published by Oxfam today called, In the Shadow of the Storm: Getting Recovery Right One Year After Typhoon Haiyan.

Oxfam said that significant progress had been made in the aftermath of the typhoon. However, the Philippine government now needs to show leadership in the relocation process for families.

Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines on 8 November 2013. It killed 6,000 people and made 4 million people homeless, with many unable to return to their houses. An estimated 1 million homes were destroyed or severely damaged. It was the strongest recorded storm to have made landfall. Almost a year after the storm families continue to struggle, with risks of deepening poverty.

Oxfam has helped 870,000 people since the typhoon struck. It has supplied water pumps, community latrines, cash vouchers for food, fishing boat replacement and repairs, clearing coconut tree debris, and setting up sawmills to convert the debris into lumber for shelters.

Oxfam Great Britain chief executive, Mark Goldring, said: “The Oxfam appeal for typhoon Haiyan raised £5 million – the British people were incredibly generous. We have seen the people of the Philippines start to get back on their feet and carry on. The government has also shown leadership in the transition from emergency to recovery efforts. But now it should show how to 'build back better.’”

“It has yet to prove that through its relocation efforts. Relocating families is not only about houses it’s also about jobs, safety, transport. People are still living in overcrowded bunkhouses and in lean-to homes – if nothing is done to these areas the families living there are at risk from another typhoon in this increasingly storm hit area.”

According to the report, 205,000 families are still waiting to be re-housed. The families live in poor, makeshift shelters in areas prone to being hit by typhoons. As of October, less than 1 percent of homes had been built due to difficulties in buying safe land in the right place. Local authorities are straining because they lack skilled people, resources and clear policies from the government.

In the Shadow of the Storm was published alongside, Can’t Afford to Wait, a broader report from Oxfam on how reducing disaster risk and adapting to climate change across Asia needs to improve. This would help millions of poor people withstand climate related disasters, like typhoon Haiyan.

Goldring said: “If the risk of disasters is not adequately confronted, then the cards will continue to be stacked against poor people who bear the brunt of these catastrophes. Action in the Philippines must be backed up globally by actions to tackle these disasters.

“In Asia, it is often small food producers who often live in harm’s way. These families have no savings to tide them over after a disaster. It is they who will lose in the fight against climate change. Families are being forced to choose between safety and putting food on the table.”

//ENDS

For more information contact Christina Corbett on +44 (0)1865 47 2530 or +44 (0)7557 48 37 58 or ccorbett@oxfam.org.uk

Notes to editors:

In the Shadow of the Storm can be read here: http://www.oxfam.org/en/research/haiyan-shadow-storm

Can't Afford to Wait can be read here: http://www.oxfam.org/en/research/asia-climate-change-cant-afford-wait

The Disasters Emergency Appeal (DEC) - an appeal that is made up of Oxfam and 12 other UK charities - raised £95 million for typhoon Haiyan.

World: One year on global leaders must heed Haiyan warning

6 November 2014 - 7:17am
Source: Christian Aid Country: Philippines, World

November 8 marks the first anniversary of Typhoon Haiyan, the strongest tropical storm ever recorded making landfall, which devastated large parts of the Philippines, killing 6,300. The death toll also made it one of the deadliest typhoons in recorded history.

In the year since Haiyan struck, Christian Aid partner organisations in the Philippines have reached 290,000 people, helping them rebuild their lives and livelihoods.

The anniversary coincides with the publication of the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which this week warned that climate change is set to inflict “severe, widespread, and irreversible impacts” unless carbon emissions are cut sharply and rapidly.

It is against the backdrop of that sobering warning that the annual UN summit on climate change will open in Lima, Peru on December 1.

Christian Aid’s Principle Climate Change Adviser, Dr Alison Doig, today urged governments at the summit to take heed of the IPCC’s warnings, saying Haiyan was a frightening example of what the world can expect if drastic action is not taken.

“The scientific consensus is that extreme weather events such as Typhoon Haiyan will become more frequent, and more intense, unless we act to stop the impacts of climate change already evident such as rising sea levels, and the warming of the oceans becoming worse,” she warned.

“It is now abundantly clear that all countries need to transition to a low-carbon energy future, while at the same time protecting vulnerable people from the impacts of climate disasters.

“The IPCC report is quite clear. The only way to avoid disasters like Haiyan becoming a frequent occurrence is to act now, adapt to the effects of a changing climate and cut emissions to prevent climate change getting worse.

“The global climate deal which will be worked on in Lima and hopefully signed in Paris in December 2015 must be fair and ambitious, with countries focussed on keeping the temperature rise to well below 2oC degrees above pre-industrial levels.

“This will require many countries setting aside their own short term interests for the common good.”

Ends For more information contact Andrew Hogg at ahogg@christian-aid.org 0207 523 2058; The 24 hour Christian Aid press duty phone is 07850 242950.

Notes to Editors:

  1. Christian Aid works in some of the world's poorest communities in around 50 countries at any one time. We act where there is great need, regardless of religion, helping people to live a full life, free from poverty. We provide urgent, practical and effective assistance in tackling the root causes of poverty as well as its effects.

  2. Christian Aid’s core belief is that the world can and must be changed so that poverty is ended: this is what we stand for. Everything we do is about ending poverty and injustice: swiftly, effectively, sustainably. Our strategy document Partnership for Change (http://www.christianaid.org.uk/images/partnership-for-change-summary.pdf) explains how we set about this task.

  3. Christian Aid is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of more than 130 churches and church-related organisations that work together in humanitarian assistance, advocacy and development. Further details at http://actalliance.org

  4. Follow Christian Aid's newswire on Twitter: http://twitter.com/caid_newswire

  5. For more information about the work of Christian Aid visit http://www.christianaid.org.uk

Philippines: Philippines: A Year After Typhoon, Mother Treasures School Awards

6 November 2014 - 3:44am
Source: World Food Programme Country: Philippines

After Typhoon Haiyan flattened her home in the Philippines, Analy’s first thought was to unearth the medals her children had won at school. The bits of ribbon and metal symbolised the family’s hopes of a better future. A year later, the family still has some rebuilding to do but Analy is happy to report that her children are back in school and hopes for the future are as vibrant as ever.

TANAUAN, LEYTE – Analy, 36, has always seen education as the key to a better life for her children. So when her home was smashed to pieces by Typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest tropical storms ever recorded, it was the loss of her children’s school medals that pained her most.

“My children were crying because they saw their medals covered by our destroyed house,” she recalls, going onto to describe how the family painstakingly sifted through the rubble to find the dozen or so medals that were still there.

“The children gathered the medals one by one and dried them out in the sun. They are very important to me because my children really put in the effort to earn them.”

Assistance helped family recover

It is hugely important to Analy that one year after Typhoon Haiyan, all her children are back in school and studying hard. Her eldest daughter has even won a scholarship to study at the local university. He wants to train to be a teacher.

Analy says one of the things that made this possible was the assistance – food and cash – that her family received from WFP after the typhoon. In the immediate aftermath of the disaster, it was basic food aid – in the form of rice included in family food parcels. Later came the financial assistance, aimed at helping vulnerable families rebuild and recover.

“My husband and I were so happy; we breathed a sigh of relief! The financial help we received from WFP allowed us to continue to provide for our children’s needs, especially for their food. We were also able to purchase school materials, medicines, vitamins, and clothes.”

The unconditional cash assistance programme helped over 500,000 people from 50 municipalities in Leyte, Samar, and Panay islands.

Analy and her husband Margarito were so determined to keep their children’s education in track that they even decided to postpone the rebuilding of their home so that money could be spent on school books.

Of course, it helps that Margarito is a carpenter. So the house he built for them just days after the typhoon is still standing and quite usable. Meanwhile, he earns money working on rebuilding homes for other people.

“We prioritize our children’s education so that’s where my husband’s salary goes. Even if our house is unfinished, it’s really important for us. We see that they are very interested in finishing their studies.”

"Children will never forget Haiyan"

Analy says her children were traumatised by their experience in the typhoon. As the water levels rose, they fled from their own house to that of a friend. The roof blew off the house they were sheltering in, leaving them exposed to the elements for days. “We felt hunger and cold,” she said.

Afterwards, for many weeks, the children would cry and cover their ears every time it rained. “Now, I think my children have recovered. But I know they will never forget what happened during the typhoon.”

World: Hashtag Standards For Emergencies

6 November 2014 - 1:24am
Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Country: Guinea, Haiti, Liberia, Philippines, Sierra Leone, World

KEY MESSAGES

  • The public is using Twitter for real-time information exchange and for expressing emotional support during a variety of crises, such as wildfires, earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, political protests, mass shootings, and communicable-disease tracking.31 By encouraging proactive standardization of hashtags, emergency responders may be able to reduce a big-data challenge and better leverage crowdsourced information for operational planning and response.

  • Twitter is the primary social media platform discussed in this Think Brief. However, the use of hashtags has spread to other social media platforms, including Sina Weibo, Facebook, Google+ and Diaspora. As a result, the ideas behind hashtag standardization may have a much larger sphere of influence than just this one platform.

  • Three hashtag standards are encouraged and discussed: early standardization of the disaster name (e.g., #Fay), how to report non-emergency needs (e.g., #PublicRep) and requesting emergency assistance (e.g., #911US).

  • As well as standardizing hashtags, emergency response agencies should encourage the public to enable Global Positioning System (GPS) when tweeting during an emergency. This will provide highly detailed information to facilitate response.

  • Non-governmental groups, national agencies and international organizations should discuss the potential added value of monitoring social media during emergencies. These groups need to agree who is establishing the standards for a given country or event, which agency disseminates these prescriptive messages, and who is collecting and validating the incoming crowdsourced reports.

  • Additional efforts should be pursued regarding how to best link crowdsourced information into emergency response operations and logistics. If this information will be collected, the teams should be ready to act on it in a timely manner.

World: Can’t Afford to Wait - Why Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation plans in Asia are still failing millions of people

6 November 2014 - 1:03am
Source: Oxfam Country: Philippines, World

Climate-related disasters and food crises are devastating thousands of lives and holding back development across Asia. A year on from the devastating super-typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, Oxfam calls for governments across Asia, backed by regional and global institutions and fair contributions from wealthy countries, to ramp up efforts to address these challenges. Without greater investment in climate and disaster-resilient development and more effective assistance for those at risk, super-typhoon Haiyan-scale disasters could fast become the norm, not the exception.

Philippines: Social Protection Systems Help Mitigate Disaster and Climate Risk

6 November 2014 - 12:35am
Source: World Bank Country: Philippines

Countries can respond to natural disasters better and assist victims faster if robust social protection systems are in place— World Bank Group

MANILA, November 4, 2014 – The Government of the Philippines and the World Bank Group hosted the first regional conference to capture lessons on how countries could better respond to natural disasters through robust social protection systems. The event – which brought together experts and policy makers from 17 countries in Africa, Latin America, and Asia and the Pacific regions—concluded that linking social protection and disaster and climate risk management systems is prudent public policy that could lessen the impact of and build resilience to these risks.

“Countries in Asia and the Pacific region are amongst the most prone to disaster and climate risks - and these natural calamities have devastating impact on lives and livelihoods, especially for the poorest and the most vulnerable. However, worldwide experience shows that post-disaster recovery and resilience can be greatly helped if there are robust social protection systems in place," said Arup Banerji, the World Bank Group’s Senior Director and Head of Global Practice, Social Protection and Labor. “The World Bank Group is proud to co-host this conference with the Philippines’ lead social protection agency, the Department of Social Welfare and Development. We learned how the existing Pantawid Conditional Cash Transfer Program, which has become an integral part of the Philippines’ Social Protection Systems, helps the Government respond to victims of last year’s Typhoon Yolanda. With a delivery mechanism already in place, countries can target their post-disaster humanitarian efforts better and channel them faster.”

Lessons from half a dozen countries around the globe highlight the merits of planning ahead and linking social protection and disaster and climate risk management systems. A better, more rapid and affordable system can help mitigate risk and respond quickly to disasters, thereby preventing increases in poverty, and protecting the government’s fiscal health.

Typhoon Yolanda was recorded to be among the strongest in history to ever make landfall, with over 8000 casualties and close to 200 severely affected municipalities in the Philippines. About 3 million households with almost 13.5 million family members were affected directly. Over a million houses were damaged or destroyed. The total damage and loss has been estimated at almost US$13 billion. The loss of jobs, livelihood, houses and productive assets immediately pushed about half a million households into poverty, while those that were already poor were pushed deeper into destitution.

“Before Typhoon Yolanda struck, the Philippine Government had already put in place various social protection programs aimed at empowering the poor. But the typhoon was a gamechanger; it tested the resiliency of our people and stretched government disaster response system and social protection structures to the limit,” said Corazon “Dinky” Soliman, the Philippine Secretary of Social Welfare and Development. “In the first critical days after the disaster, it was the network of implementers of our Pantawid Conditional Cash Transfer Program and the leadership in municipalities that we were able to mobilize. The database of the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction helped us in identifying families that could be enrolled for various rehabilitation programs, such as the cash-for-work and cash-for-asset rebuilding. From our experience with Yolanda, convergence with other programs is real and is a practice implemented at different levels.”

The experts highlighted the following issues in the 3-day workshop:

• Social protection, disaster risk management and climate change adaptation share the common objectives of reducing risks, lessening the impacts of and building resilience to shocks. There are various tools and instruments available to prepare for and respond to disaster and climate risks, such as through public works programs and benefit transfers which can be adapted and scaled up to respond to disasters.

• Disaster risk financing and insurance is a key component in building a country’s financial resilience to disaster. A country is financially resilient when its government and people can manage the financial impact of disaster and climate change risk without compromising sustainable development, fiscal stability, or the wellbeing of families and communities.

• The scaling up of social protection systems will require technical infrastructure, such as the readiness of existing national identification systems, linkages between existing targeting systems and disaster response, data management systems for delivery of cash and kind benefits, and information technology tools to facilitate these processes.

“The Philippines provides a rich experience for other countries facing similar challenges with disaster and climate risks. It is encouraging to see the Government’s commitment to this agenda and to continually improve its existing social protection systems by making it resilient to disaster, while ensuring that it responds rapidly to the consequences of disasters,” said Motoo Konishi, World Bank Country Director for the Philippines. “To do this, the Department of Social Welfare and Development has converged its three flagship programs --conditional cash transfer, community driven development and livelihood support-- to make them an effective tool in making households more resilient to disasters.”

MEDIA CONTACTS

In Manila
Dave Llorito
Tel : +63-2-465-2500
dllorito@worldbank.org

In Washington
Mehreen Sheikh
Tel : +1-202-458-7336
msheikh@worldbank.org

In Manila
Mohamad Al-Arief
Tel : +1-202-458-0119
malarief@worldbank.org

World: Education is an antidote to disaster

6 November 2014 - 12:24am
Source: Bangkok Post Country: Lao People's Democratic Republic (the), Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, World

Republished with permission. © Post Publishing PCL. www.bangkokpost.com

Writer: Ramon C Bacani

Ramon C Bacani is director of Southeast Asian Ministers of Education – Regional Centre for Educational Innovation and Technology (SEAMEO Innotech).

It took 10 days for Raul Basa, principal of Cabalawan Elementary School in Tacloban City, to get to his school after Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines on Nov 8, 2013. The huge amount of debris left left by the record-breaking typhoon blocked all roads.

When he reached his school, Mr Basa's heart sank at the sight of two collapsed classrooms and seven partially damaged ones of the 14 in total. Even the school gate and perimeter fence were blown away.

After checking that none of his teachers had perished in the typhoon, Mr Basa looked for ways to keep his school functioning.

With help from Unicef, the government and private groups, in just three weeks, classes resumed in hastily repaired classrooms with tarpaulins serving as temporary roofs. Some classes had to be held in tents, causing one teacher to collapse from the heat. Teachers held classes in two shifts so all students could be accommodated in what remained of the damaged classrooms.

Mr Basa said he expects repairs to be completed by the end of the year and classes to return to normal then.

And as devastating as Haiyan was, natural disasters that wipe out lives, endanger health and security and threaten livelihoods are a reality for many countries throughout East Asia and the Pacific. A 2013 World Bank study said that 40% of floods worldwide from 1980 to 2011 hit countries in the region, and 1.6 billion of its residents have been affected by disasters since 2000.

Along with being the most disaster-stricken region in the world, East Asia and the Pacific is also saddled with various forms of conflicts within countries and among communities.

Within the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organisation (SEAMEO), the Philippines serves as lead country for education in emergencies. One of the organisation's main aims is reaching the unreached as countries pursue education for all.

Southeast Asian countries grapple with different types of disasters of varying intensities and impact. In recent years, at least five countries dealt with the haze crisis, while other countries struggle with the steady onslaught of cyclones and floods.

As the Pacific Ring of Fire straddles some parts of the region, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, and tsunamis have caused severe devastation. Outbreaks of viruses such as avian flu and H1N1 threatened the region's public health systems. Man-made emergencies through conflict worsen matters.

A common government response in Southeast Asia has been for inter-agency bodies to lead disaster recovery efforts. This approach, common in Singapore and Indonesia, for example, is holistic, involving coordination between national agencies and the public.

Within the education sector, the ministries in Laos, the Philippines, Myanmar and Singapore have formed working groups to help develop disaster resilience. Other countries reported having disaster management bodies at the school-community level.

Across the region, efforts to protect education in emergencies include capacity building towards disaster resilience and response, building safe schools, and developing action plans that aim to lessen school disruption during emergencies.

Mr Basa's school in the Philippines, back in operation while still reeling from Haiyan, is an example of the kind of difference this type of coordinated approach can make.

A recent forum by SEAMEO Innotech, an international, not-for-profit organisation helping to find technology-based solutions to the pressing problems of basic education in the Philippines and Southeast Asia, proposed that the education sector could be an active player in building a disaster resilient nation. This can be done by integrating disaster risk reduction into schools' curricula and extracurricular activities and continuing to provide uninterrupted learning opportunities during emergencies to soften the impact of disasters on learners.

Meanwhile, Unicef East Asia and Pacific Regional Office, Unesco Bangkok and SEAMEO are collaborating to develop the Regional Guidelines for Education Programmes and Policies that Promote Social Cohesion and Comprehensive School Safety.

A regional consultation jointly held by the three organisations is now taking place at SEAMEO Innotech in Quezon City. The consultation aims to strengthen the capacities of East Asia and the Pacific in developing comprehensive school safety and social cohesion approaches to address all risks faced faced by children, schools, communities, and education systems and reinforce their total resilience.

It is expected to bring together the different perspectives on education and resilience from representatives of government, particularly ministries of education and the national bodies tasked with disaster mitigation and management, of more than 14 countries in the region.

We realise that we need to recognise all challenges — urbanisation, climate change, natural hazard and disaster, conflict, and economic volatility — and work through them in a systematic manner. Neglecting any one of them would blunt any potential gains in educating for resilience.

Through education, we hope to build our children's dreams and shield them from the angry fits of nature and man.

Philippines: Philippines: Typhoon Haiyan - Executive Brief, 5 November 2014

5 November 2014 - 11:32pm
Source: Food and Agriculture Organization Country: Philippines

HIGHLIGHTS

  • FAO is providing assistance in four critical areas of intervention, in support of over 154 000 families:
  1. Rice and corn farming – FAO has supported some 100 000 rice and corn farmers since December 2013. Livelihoods were restored rapidly, with big returns. For example, the rice seed distributed by FAO to more than the targeted 44 000 farming households, in time for the December/January planting season, yielded enough rice to: feed over 740 000 people for a year; generate vital income; and save seed for the next planting season.

  2. Fisheries and coastal communities – FAO is providing some 19 000 small-scale fishers with livelihood inputs, technical guidance and trainings on aquaculture, post-harvest processing, marine protected areas management and hybrid boats.

  3. Coconut-based farming systems – FAO is helping 32 500 small-scale coconut farmers build alternative livelihoods and is providing 3 000 upland farmers with seedlings and training to rehabilitate agroforestry systems.

  4. Coastal/mangrove forest rehabilitation – FAO is promoting the natural regeneration of coastal ecosystems and the recovery and protection of related livelihoods by distributing seeds and planting materials.

  • Resilience building is a key part of FAO’s ongoing interventions, complementing efforts to meet the urgent needs of farmers whose seed stocks were lost or damaged by the typhoon.

  • FAO has mobilized over USD 39.7 million – more than 100 percent of the funds appealed for under the Typhoon Haiyan Strategic Response Plan. Contributors include: Central Emergency Response Fund, European Commission Directorate-General for Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection, FAO and the Governments of Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom

Philippines: ‘Yolanda’ made Samar community stronger, wiser, through DSWD program

5 November 2014 - 9:24pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

Typhoon Yolanda stories can be depressing, given the level of devastation it brought to the country.

Barangay Inobangan in San Sebastian, Samar, however, is a different case.

Even though it was also hit by ‘Yolanda’ a year ago on November 8, 2013, the residents did not allow the disaster to overwhelm them. Instead, they used it as a springboard to grow stronger as a community, with the help of Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan-Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (Kalahi-CIDSS), one of the programs of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), in partnership with the Millennium Challenge Account (MCC).

Looking at the face of defeat

After ‘Yolanda’, prices of construction materials skyrocketed, given the high demand for these because of the large-scale repairs and infrastructure recovery works that needed to be done following the disaster.

This was the situation the people of San Sebastian found themselves facing. Implementing a 0.7-km path walk as a government-funded sub-project through Kalahi-CIDSS did not stop their previously contracted supplier from backing out because its stocks ran out.

The Procurement Team volunteers, led by Mario Vinceto, 42, nearly gave up. Canvassing failed several times, almost leading to the volunteer Procurement Team to surrender.

“May times na gusto na naming sumuko (There were times when we wanted to give up)”, said Mario.

They were eventually able to find suppliers, but only by January 2014, two months after ‘Yolanda’.

Still, the experience produced a lot of good. Since they have had prior experience in Kalahi-CIDSS, having implemented it the previous year, they were able to further develop their procurement skills. The barangay is now looking into formally adopting the procurement system of Kalahi-CIDSS as they now want to increase the involvement of residents.

The residents also became more confident in their skills in identifying quality in the materials and actual construction of sub-projects, even those that are not under Kalahi-CIDSS.

Antonieta Abaygar, 58, who served as the Barangay Sub-Project Management Chairperson (BSPMC) for their path walk sub-project, said that people are now more confident and stringent about standards of sub-projects.

She shared, “May nakita ang isang volunteer na na-damage ang kalsada. Agad sinabing nasira ang kalsada. Magkaka-findings iyang supplier. Kung Kalahi-CIDSS iyan, blacklisted na iyan (One of the volunteers saw part of the road was damaged. He said that the road is damaged. There will be findings on the supplier. If this was a Kalahi-CIDSS sub-project, the supplier would already be blacklisted).”

Employment

Residents also gained other things in their involvement in Kalahi-CIDSS.

For instance, women were able to earn as laborers during the construction of their path walk. This was something new for them, as it was more common among them to stay at home instead of work, let alone in construction.

Priscilla Jabonete, 41, who served as one of the laborers, said, “Dati, lalaki lang ang nag-le-labor. Ngayon, diri na… Ang mga babae, puwede na magtrabaho ayon sa kakayanan (Men were the only ones who did construction work before. This is no longer the case. Women can now work based on skill).”

They got the same salary as the men at P210 per day, which they used to help support their families.

Elita Pacayra, 25, and a mother of two said, “Okay ang trabaho kasi nakakadagdag kita para sa pamilya (The work is good because it helps us earn for our families),” adding that she uses the money to buy food for her family.

The job opportunities for women in Barangay Inobangan through KALAHI-CIDSS-MCC will not end there. Earlier this year, the barangay was one of the communities awarded a Gender Incentive Grant (GIG), also through the partnership project.

Through the GIG, interested women can be provided skills trainings in construction work such as welding, plumbing, electricity, masonry, and carpentry.

As a barangay of a 6th class municipality with 57 Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program partner-beneficiaries, the job generation as a result of the trainings will be a big help to these poor families.

More economic opportunities

The path walk itself will lead to greater economic opportunities for the villagers.

Inobangan is primarily a farming community, with 77 of its 108 households involved in this industry. Before the path walk was constructed, farmers had to hire porters to help them bring their crops to the market, at P20 per sack, an already sizeable sum considering the meager earnings they get.

To make matters even more difficult for the farmers, even a little bit of rain makes the path muddy, making it difficult and dangerous for them to traverse the path, especially if they have their crops with them.

With the construction of the path walk, traveling to and from their farms will now be safer and quicker, and they will be able to use the money they previously spent on hiring porters to buy more seeds, put food on the table, and support their children.

Residents from neighboring barangays such as Balugo and Osmeña will also benefit from the path walk, as they can also use it to get to and from their villages and their farms.

Working in the sub-project also made the residents have more ownership of this, pushing them to take good care of it.

Said Priscilla, “Kami ang nag-trabaho diyan. May share kami diyan (We were the ones who worked for that, so we have a share in that).”

According to the Inobangan residents, volunteering in Kalahi-CIDSS helped tie the community closer together.

Barangay Captain Wilma Abaygar, 41, said, “Ang Kalahi-CIDSS ay pakikipagtulungan, kapit-bisig (Kalahi-CIDSS is about helping, linking arms with each other).”

Barangay Inobangan proved that even a disaster as strong as ‘Yolanda’ will not be able to break their spirits as long as they work together as a community.

As Barangay Captain Wilma Abaygar said, “Dati, walang pakialam ang mga tao, lalo na para sa kabilang-barangay. Nagkaroon lang ng ganyan sa Kalahi-CIDSS (People did not care before, especially for other barangays. This only happened as a result of Kalahi-CIDSS).”

Community-driven

Kalahi-CIDSS is a DSWD program that seeks to help alleviate poverty through community-driven development.

KALAHI CIDSS-NCDDP is the expansion into a national scale of operations of the CDD approach, which was tried and proven effective by Kalahi-CIDSS. It targets the coverage of 847 of the poorest municipalities in the country.

The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) is an independent U.S. foreign aid agency created in 2004 to help achieve the Millennium Development Goals by helping countries promote economic growth.(DSWD)

Philippines: Bangsamoro Dev’t Plan ‎to present clear path to peace and dev't - Deles

5 November 2014 - 9:20pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

SULTAN KUDARAT, Maguindanao, Nov 6 -- "‎This Bangsamoro Development Plan is important because it gathers the collective hopes and aspirations of the Bangsamoro people, government leaders, partners in the business and private sectors, and civil society organizations, into a concrete plan. It is a vision of the Bangsamoro, by the Bangsamoro, for the Bangsamoro,"‎ said Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Quintos Deles on Sunday at the turnover and launch of the Bangsamoro Development Plan at the Moro Islamic Liberation Front's (MILF) Camp Darapanan in this province.

Addressing an audience of more than four hundred guests, Deles congratulated the leadership and members of the MILF and the Bangsamoro Development Agency for completing the BDP that she describes as a valuable tool for development that will provide strategic directions for the delivery and upgrade of basic services to the communities once the Bangsamoro political entity is established.

”What makes this Bangsamoro Development Plan even more valuable is its attempt to present a clear vision of peace and development that was crafted by your own hands, and came from the hearts and minds of those who have struggled for so long to bring peace in the communities,” the peace adviser said. 



According to MILF chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim, the BDP’s overall goal is to support milestones in the Bangsamoro peace process by laying the foundation of a just, peaceful and prosperous Bangsamoro society. 



“The responsibility of producing a plan that would guarantee the transformation of the deplorable conditions of our grassroots communities to a life with dignity is not an easy task,” Ebrahim said while expressing his gratitude for the assistance of government and the international community in coming up with the plan. ‎

Officer-in-charge of the World Bank in the Philippines Matt Stephens said that the formulation of the BDP is a bold move on the part of the MILF. “I think through this process, we’ve seen that investment bearing fruit. Because when you started developing the BDP, it began with relationships of trust, relationships of mutual understanding with the government and with the development partners," he said.



The BDP was developed through the support of the Mindanao Trust Fund, a multi-donor facility that was started in 2006 to support economic and social recovery and promotes inclusive and effective governance in conflict-affected areas of Mindanao. It is currently administered by the World Bank.

On November 5-6, the BDP will be presented to the public through the Philippines Development Forum on Bangsamoro to be held in Davao City. President Benigno Simeon Aquino III will be in attendance to affirm government's partnership with the MILF and invite the international community, private sector and civil society in its implementation.

Continued commitment of gov't

Deles reiterated the administration's commitment to see through the implementation of the signed Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro, from ensuring the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law to the establishment of the political entity. 



"We are committed to walk the path towards peaceful and genuine autonomy with you. We stand ready to provide whatever guidance and assistance you may need to ensure the successful implementation of the BDP," Deles said.

‎According to the peace adviser, ‎“the challenges and difficulties we have faced this past few years under the administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III are testament to the strength of commitment and desire of the government and MILF, with the help of our partners, to bring just and lasting peace to the Bangsamoro.” 


Budget Secretary Florencio "Butch" Abad who was also present at the event and was asked to give a message before the program’s close, echoed the Aquino Administration’s continuing commitment to the peace process and related the instruction of the President to ensure that there is adequate and ample financing for the BDP.


“We are with you here and we will be with you all the way [to make sure you are able to implement this plan],” he said.

A new dawn

Deles declared that with the unveiling of the BDP, “a new dawn has come. And with the coming of light is the rise of the Bangsamoro.”

The peace adviser noted that the Bangsamoro peace process has already achieved a lot of milestones under the current administration. "We have come so far from decades of conflict, grief, and loss. Peace that has been elusive is now within our grasp," she said.

Deles called on stakeholders to “safeguard this journey to lasting peace” as there will continue to be more challenges in the road towards the establishment of the Bangsamoro.

“As we have always said, it will take real and much effort, but, just as we all share the responsibility of working for peace and development, so will we all share in the prosperity it will bring,” she said.

The turnover and launch of the BDP was also attended by Malaysian facilitator Tengku Dato' Ab Ghafar Tengku Mohamed, United Nations Resident Coordinator Luiza Carvalho, Japan International Cooperation Agency chief representative Noriaki Niwa, representatives from international aid agencies and members of civil society.‎ (OPAPP)

Philippines: Red Cross turns over core shelters, water and sanitation facilities in Compostela Valley

5 November 2014 - 9:03pm
Source: Philippine National Red Cross Country: Philippines

As part of Philippine Red Cross' rehabilitation efforts on Typhoon Pablo (internation name Bopha) core shelters and water and sanitation facilities were turned over today in Compostela Valley.

PRC Chairman Richard Gordon and Secretary General Gwendolyn Pang turned over 350 core shelter units to family beneficiaries in municipality of New Bataan and Monkayo today.

Through funding support of 70,000 php per shelter from the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent (IFRC) hundreds of families can now live in decent homes.

Water and Sanitation facilities in Compostela Central Elementary School and New Visayas Elementary School were also officially inaugurated today.

The WATSAN facilities are composed of two units of male comfort rooms and urinals, two units of female comfort rooms and two units of hand washing facilities.

On December 2012, typhoon Pablo (international name Bopha made landfall in Mindanao. It is considered as the worst typhoon of 2012 affecting 208 municipalities, and displacing more than 3,000 families. Over 32,000 houses were destroyed, with recorded casualties of 627 dead, 3,248 persons injured and 568 still missing.

The worst hit provinces were Davao Oriental and Compostela Valley, where the typhoon caused massive flooding and landslides.

Through the continuous efforts of the Philippine Red Cross, and with the support of partner national societies, the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent and International Committee of the Red Cross, effective, and expeditious assistance were extended to survivors of the storm.

"The Philippines has always been in the path of powerful and destructive typhoons. It makes a lot of sense for us to be always ready and prepared to respond to such disasters. More and more, the cumulative impact of these devastating storms should make us realize that disaster risk reduction programs must be part of any sustainable approach to prevent the loss of life or destruction of property,” said PRC Chairman Richard Gordon.

More than 4,350 families were provided with core shelters and 7,285 individuals were given shelter tool kit to immediately repair and reconstructed their homes.

PRC also provided livelihood opportunities to more than 3,100 individuals through cash-for-work program and 25, 453 families benefitted from the livelihood programs.

Clean and potable water is one of the pressing issues that PRC addressed in the affected provinces. More than 3.7million liters of water were produced catering 20, 145 families.

Health and hygiene promotions were conducted for 40, 190 families in Agusan del Sur, Bukidnon, Compostela Valley, Davao Oriental, Palawan, Siquijor and Surigao del Sur.

Meanwhile, Secretary General Pang said that she was elated to see how the people of Compostela Valley have almost fully recovered from the disaster.

"It has been two years, and we are happy to see that most of the affected families have already gotten back on their feet.'” said Pang.

Philippines: Filipino fisher-folk regain the livelihoods they lost to Haiyan

5 November 2014 - 8:42pm
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department Country: Philippines

In light of the upcoming one year anniversary of typhoon Haiyan (this Saturday), our colleague in the ECHO Manila office met with Edgar Suganob Jr who survived the disaster. Edgar reflects on the tragedy that hit his family and explains how he managed to rebuild his life from scratch.

A year after it hit the Philippines, Typhoon Haiyan – locally known as Yolanda - still leaves the most vivid memories for those who survived it. For good reason: even in a country habituated to cyclones, this was the strongest storm to ever make landfall in the country.

Edgar Suganob Jr., for example, a 23 year-old fisherman from Abuyog town in the south-eastern coast of Leyte Province, says he will never forget what he lived through back then. “I walked one whole day and one whole night right after the typhoon hit as I needed to reach Tacloban and look for my missing sister who I knew was trapped there at the height of the typhoon, he recalls. The whole area was completely ravaged, there were debris and dead bodies everywhere...”. He later found his sister alive, but she was so traumatised by the experience that she eventually migrated to Cebu City, on another island.

Edgar, his wife and their two small children aged three and five were lucky to survive the disaster, unlike the 7 000 Filipinos who perished in the Haiyan mayhem. Yet, having lost both their house as well as their fishing boat and gears – they had nothing left to survive. Edgar remembers how he waited in long queues at the distribution centers just to have at least one meal a day for his family. When food rations started to slow down, he joined his neighbours in salvaging fallen coconut trees in order to sell the timber. But he knew that this was just a temporary way to make ends meet. Without a peso in his pocket, he was totally helpless when it came to actually rebuilding his lost livelihood.

On 21 October 2014, however, Edgar saw the light at the end of the tunnel. That day, he received what he needed to regain his livelihood: a brand new boat engine along with fishing equipment, provided by the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) thanks to funding from the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection department (ECHO). The boat itself was provided by the government, as this support to the fishermen of Abuyog was a collaboration between FAO, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources and the local government unit, aimed at rehabilitating fishing livelihoods of 5 000 families in the areas most devastated by Typhoon Haiyan.

Overall, ECHO allotted a total of €30 million for emergency and early recovery assistance, benefitting a total of 1.2 million people in the eight most affected provinces along Haiyan's path (Palawan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo, Cebu, Leyte, Samar, and Eastern Samar). Immediately after the typhoon, ECHO and its partners provided food, water, non-food items, emergency shelters (tarpaulins) and emergency communication equipment. Since then, the most vulnerable communities have been supported through cash-for-work programmes and cash grants, the repair of shelters, the rehabilitation of water supply systems and sanitation and washing facilities, the provision of primary health care and the repair of health facilities, and various rural livelihood projects. Special attention was also given to children, be it through psychosocial support or the reconstruction of school buildings and daycare centres.

The distribution of boat engines ended the day in Abuyog meant Edgar ended the day with a big smile, a happy heart, and peace of mind. “My fishing livelihood is back and this will help me a lot in bringing back my family’s life to how it was before Haiyan”, he said. Yes, there are still gruesome memories of the typhoon, but today Edgar chooses to put in his mind and in his heart the joy and laughter that he and his neighbors shared when they got their new boats and engines.

Philippines: EU AID volunteer implements disaster prevention policy in the Philippines

5 November 2014 - 8:37pm
Source: European Commission Humanitarian Aid department Country: Philippines

In November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan tore a path of destruction through the Philippines affecting over 14 million people. The homes of five million people were damaged or destroyed, and over 6 000 people lost their lives. VSO EU Aid volunteer, Efrath Silver, spent nine months as an institutional development adviser and policy analyst, supporting the Filipino government’s project NOAH (Nationwide Operational Assessment of Hazards). She was assisting national efforts to ensure communities have a clear plan to prepare for and prevent future devastation.

Plans exist but they aren’t being implemented

Natural disasters happen frequently in the Philippines, and in many villages they particularly affect poor communities living in disaster-prone areas.

“The Philippines has a very extensive national law on disaster risk reduction; it all looks good on paper, but one of the problems is the lack of skills, staff and funding to actually take the necessary measures in the communities where they are needed most,” explains VSO volunteer policy analyst Efrath Silver.

The national law on disaster preparedness covers a full range of measures, outlining what needs to happen from the national to the village level ahead of a natural disaster. This includes having a disaster contingency fund and mobilising volunteers trained for emergencies.

“The law is comprehensive but implementation is lacking and this is what I’m trying to figure out…why national policy on disaster prevention with lifesaving consequences is so difficult to put into practice.”

Understanding local concerns

Drawing on her professional background as a policy adviser in flood risk management, Efrath believes in the power of properly implemented disaster prevention measures, “Half of the Netherlands is flood prone but the last major flooding causing casualties was in 1953…the country is so prepared that most people don’t know they live in a flood prone area,” she remarks.

Her work has involved reviewing national disaster management policy and then visiting disaster-prone areas to find out how these policies are being put into practice at a local government level, and what barriers exist if they aren’t.

“I explore how they can improve on existing plans and see if I can help them do a better job. I then come up with recommendations that can help Filipino government agencies as well as the local government implement the measures more effectively,” explains Efrath.

The EU Aid Volunteers initiative gives thousands of Europeans the opportunity to engage in humanitarian aid around the world. To find out more about initiative, visit the EU Aid Volunteers page.

Philippines: Mayon evacuees sent home this week, alert level 3 remains hoisted

5 November 2014 - 1:40pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines

LEGAZPI CITY, Nov. 5 (PIA) -- Families displaced by the the recent unrest of Mayon Volcano were sent home this week following significant decrease of abnormal activities of volcano in the past days, yet residents living within the 6-kilometer danger zone (PDZ) will have to stay in evacuation center.

Albay Gov. Joey Salceda issued the directive during the joint conference of the officials of Bicol Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council and Albay Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council Tuesday this week.

The directive was issued following consultation with the The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) revealing that Mayon monitoring showed significant decrease in the volcano’s abnormal activities along with the hazard review and vulnerability update on population at risk.

" The regional and provinical DRR authorities had also made consultation with chief executives of towns and cities located around Mayon volcano with affected residents and similarly agreed on the decision to do so," Salceda Said.

Phivolcs resident volcanologist Eduardo Laguerta meanwhile said although there is a lull or significant decrease of the volcano's abnormal activities, the possibility of a dangerous eruption is still imminent thus Alert Level 3 remains.

This prompted the provincial governments, using the new markers identifying the 6-km radius permanent danger zone of Mayon Volcano, to allow only 33 barangays to returned home from the more than 40 barangays dispalced by the threats of Mayon's unrest.

Evacuees who were sent home included from the villages of Oson, San Isidro, Buhian in Tabaco City; San Roque and Canaway in Malilipot; Lidong, Fidel Surtida, Sta. Misericordia, San Fernando and San Isidro in Sto. Domingo; Budiao, Alcala, Miisi, Salvacion, Matnog and Banadero in Daraga; Cabangan, Quirangay, Salugan, Sua and Tumpa in Camalig; Maninila, Muladbucad Grande, Lumadbucad Pequeno, Tandarora, Masarawag, Dona Tomasa and Maipon in Guinobatan town and Tambo, Nabonton and Amtic in Ligao City.

Some 4,191 families or 17,549 people are to remain at the evacuation center residing from the villages of Magapo, Comon, Buang, Mariro and Nagsipit in Tabaco City, Calbayog in Malilipot, non-relocated resident of Miisi in Daraga, Anoling (non-relocated population only), Cabangan Purok 6, Quirangay Purok 4-7, Sua Purok 67 in Camalig, upper Muladbucad Grande in Guinobatan and Baligang in Ligao City.

Laguerta furthered that Phivolcs cannot upgrade or downgrade Mayon’s current alert level 3 status, adding that the institute may issue a special advisory or pre-Alert Level 4 Advisory anytime if the activities of the volcano goes bad to worse, in which case immediate re-evacuation will be ordered.

Albay PDRRMC chief Cedric Daep said that the provincial government of Albay, along with Team Albay comprised of Armed Forces of the Philippines, the Department of Health, the Department of Education and the Department of Social Welfare and Development, other NGOs and POs are always ready for any such eventuality

"Though the evacuees are sent home, excluding those ordered to stay, all facilities in the designated evacuation centers will stay, tents and temporary learning spaces will not be removed, Army trucks and rescue vehicles will still be on stand-by for any emergencies, including the giving of interventions," he stressed.

Bicol regional director Raffy Alejandro of the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) on the other hand stated, “Nothing will change in our strategies. The national government’s commitment and assistance will not be affected. Everything stays.”

Once the concerned local government units submit the list of those identified families in the 6-km PDZ, the Council will meet immediately for the approval of the measure to issue formal order of strategic decampment, according to Alejandro. (MAL/PIO-PGAlbay/PIA5)

Philippines: Typhoon Haiyan - One Year Report

5 November 2014 - 1:39pm
Source: CBM Country: Philippines

It is one year since Typhoon Haiyan swept across the Philippines, killing over 6,000 people and affecting more than 14 million. Since then, CBM and partners have been working to ensure that persons with disabilities are included at all levels of relief, recovery and rehabilitation. Work continues, with plans running until 2016.

Key achievements to date

  • Rapid needs assessment teams were on the ground within three days

  • More than 60,000¹ people have received support

  • Persons with disabilities are actively involved in response, organising and running emergency relief distributions, running ‘focal points’ to link with mainstream services and also producing school furniture for mainstream schools

  • More than 3800 at-risk households (approximately 23,000 people) received emergency distributions (of these, more than 75% were reached twice and more than 50% were families with persons with disabilities)

  • Two Ageing and Disability Focal Points (ADFPs) interviewed more than 4,800 people (from the most ‘at-risk’ families); 46% of these were people with disabilities and by October almost 1000 were referred to mainstream services

  • CBM is integral partner in an Ageing and Disability Task Force (ADTF)

  • Four school resource centres, which provide the opportunity for individual specialised education of children with disabilities and facilitate their mainstreaming into regular classes – have been rebuilt and refurnished; seven more are in progress

  • CBM helped finance, and participated in, a national summit on Disability inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction (DiDRR)

  • 135 damaged houses were repaired, reaching approximately 805 family members

  • Further shelter plans, which will provide typhoon resilient, accessible houses with essential WASH (Water, sanitation and hygiene) services for 100 families (approx. 600 people), are in progress. This project will involve the families directly in the construction, providing livelihood support, and will benefit them and their community (estimated 7,200 people) by giving DRR trainings and WASH sessions

  • Community Mental Health (CMH) project is running, which allow access to CMH services for 250 persons with psychosocial disabilities and provide further training in CMH for 110 health professionals in two provinces

  • Building the capacity of at least 150 field level professionals and 100 local government offices, DPOs, and humanitarian organisations on the general and practical concepts of accessibility and universal design

  • Six partner organisations received training on universal accessibility

  • Document produced with minimum requirement for building accessible shelters in reconstruction

¹Some figures are based on average household size in the Philippines, and there will be some double counting because some people have received more than one type of support.

World: Global Emergency Overview Snapshot 29 October - 4 November

5 November 2014 - 12:01pm
Source: Assessment Capacities Project Country: Afghanistan, 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, El Salvador, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gambia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, India, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Myanmar, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Uganda, Ukraine, World, Yemen

Snapshot 29 October – 4 November

Yemen: As a government was agreed by Houthi and other opposition parties, the Southern Movement announced a merger to represent all southerners in the campaign for independence. Houthi insurgents attacked the Sunni opposition Al Islah party headquarters in Ibb, while Al Qaeda killed 18 Yemeni troops during an attack in Hudaydah.

Nigeria: Boko Haram denied any truce with the Government and ruled out talks, as its fighters took control of the city of Mubi in Adamawa state, displacing thousands of people. 4,500 cases of cholera have been reported in Maiduguri, Borno state, and there is a high risk of the outbreak spreading to areas inaccessible to humanitarian agencies. Food security for the households worst affected by conflict is predicted to remain at Crisis level until March 2015.

South Sudan: Fierce fighting between government and opposition forces in Bentiu, Unity state, has caused displacement and an unconfirmed number of casualties. In Lakes state, intercommunal violence is increasing. The nutrition situation remains dire dire in Jonglei, Unity, Warrap and Northern Bahr el Ghazal states.

Updated: 04/11/2014. Next update: 11/11/2014

Global Emergency Overview Web Interface

Philippines: Un millón de filipinos siguen viviendo en refugios provisionales un año después de Haiyan

5 November 2014 - 8:48am
Source: Acción contra el Hambre Country: Philippines

8 noviembre – Aniversario Tifón Haiyan

  • 14 millones de personas se vieron afectadas por uno de los desastres naturales de mayor extensión de los últimos años

  • La comunidad internacional ha cubierto por el momento el 60% de las necesidades identificadas (468 millones de dólares de los 776 solicitados por las Naciones Unidas)

  • Las autoridades del país y las organizaciones humanitarias recalcan la importancia de hacer la reconstrucción con un enfoque de gestión de riesgos en el segundo país del mundo más afectado por desastres naturales: cada año más de 20 tifones golpean el archipiélago

“La situación ha cambiado radicalmente. Hace un año estábamos desescombrando contra el reloj para poder instalar potabilizadoras, distribuir agua segura y salvar vidas y ahora estamos ya en plena fase de rehabilitación de las redes de agua y saneamiento, que estarán listas en marzo, y afrontando un nuevo trabajo con las autoridades para darles sostenibilidad”, es el balance que hace al teléfono desde Manila Jesús Baena, coordinador de agua y saneamiento de Acción contra el Hambre que estuvo en la emergencia solo 48 horas después del desastre. “Creo que vamos a superar el punto de partida: más personas van a tener agua segura que antes de Haiyan, y esto es un logro enorme”, remata.

¿Qué queda por hacer?
En el haber tenemos las necesidades básicas de la población cubiertas, grandes avances en la rehabilitación de redes de agua y en la recuperación de medios de vida. En el debe, sin embargo, está la reconstrucción de los hogares del más de un millón de filipinos que siguen viviendo en refugios provisionales y la rehabilitación definitiva del tejido productivo. Este es precisamente el objetivo de los programas de transferencias monetarias de Acción contra el Hambre: unas 13.000 familias han recibido 12.500 pesos (220 €) con los que han podido cubrir sus necesidades alimentarias liberando así tiempo para la reconstrucción de hogares e infraestructuras al tiempo que se fomentaba la recuperación de los mercados locales. Además de las infraestructuras queda mucho por hacer en términos de recuperación de medios de vida: “los agricultores que vivían del arroz pudieron sembrar a tiempo gracias a la distribución de semillas de la ayuda internacional pero la recuperación de los cocoteros, motor de la economía en la zona, llevará mucho más tiempo. Los pescadores también perdieron sus botes y aperos”, explica el responsable de seguridad alimentaria y medios de vida, Julien Jacob. “Es importante destacar – añade- que estamos haciendo todo este trabajo con un enfoque de prevención de riesgos para que algo así no vuelva a causar tantos daños. Por ejemplo, promovemos la replantación con cocoteros más bajos y con ciclos de producción más cortos o enseñamos a los pescadores cómo proteger sus botes ante una alerta”. “También – añade Baena- estamos rehabilitando las redes de agua con tuberías enterradas y realizando planes comunitarios de contingencia”.

El apoyo psicosocial ha sido crucial para evitar una crisis nutricional
Además de las intervenciones de agua, saneamiento, higiene y medios de vida, Acción contra el Hambre puso en marcha desde el primer momento un exitoso programa de apoyo psicosocial especialmente dirigido a mujeres embarazadas, madres en periodo de lactancia y de niños menores de cinco años. “Abrimos la primera baby tent a finales de noviembre en el mayor centro de evacuación de Tacloban. Las mujeres en ese momento venían asustadas, con mucho estrés, bloqueadas emocionalmente, con necesidad de ser escuchadas y expresar su dolor, sus miedos, compartir sus experiencias… En el programa encontraron un ¨refugio¨, un lugar donde expresar sentimientos con mujeres en su misma situación, encontrar soporte, un lugar donde amamantar a sus bebés limpio y con privacidad, donde aprender cómo adaptar su ¨forzada¨ nueva vida a las necesidades básicas de sus hijos en higiene, nutrición, y salud”, explica la psicóloga catalana Núria Diez, coordinadora de este programa.

La intervención de Acción contra el Hambre en cifras

  • 320 profesionales de Acción contra el Hambre trabajando en la emergencia

  • Volumen de proyectos de Acción contra el Hambre: 25 millones €

  • 555.375 personas han recibido la ayuda de Acción contra el Hambre

o seguimiento nutricional de 99.469 niños, 728 niños tratados de desnutrición aguda severa

o 69.731 beneficiarios de las distribuciones de suplementos nutricionales para tratar y prevenir la desnutrición

o 16.561 mujeres embarazadas y en periodo de lactancia reciben apoyo psicosocial en 85 baby tents

o 46.915 personas consiguen acceso a agua segura, 5.544 letrinas construidas, 79.171 personas participan en sesiones de promoción de higiene

o 116.355 personas reciben 23.271 kits de agua, 111.215 personas reciben 22.243 kits de higiene, 76 puntos de agua rehabilitados para 23.644 personas

o 50.650 personas reciben apoyo para reconstruir sus medios de vida, 141.930 personas reciben transferencias monetarias para recuperar medios de vida, 49.000 personas reciben transferencias monetarias para cubrir sus necesidades básicas

Acción contra el Hambre es una organización humanitaria internacional e independiente que combate la desnutrición infantil a la vez que garantiza agua y medios de vida seguros a las poblaciones más vulnerables. Intervenimos en más de 45 países apoyando a más de nueve millones de personas. Nuestra visión es un mundo sin desnutrición; nuestro primer objetivo, devolver la dignidad a quienes hoy viven amenazados por el hambre.

Más información y entrevistas con portavoces:
Acción contra el Hambre España
Alicia García | Carlos Riaza: 91 771 16 63 | 609 018 735
www.accioncontraelhambre.org

Philippines: Cruz Roja trabajará con las víctimas del tifón Haiyán mientras persistan sus necesidades

5 November 2014 - 8:39am
Source: Cruz Roja Española Country: Philippines

El 8 de noviembre se cumple un año del paso del tifón Haiyán o Yolanda por Filipinas

El tifón Haiyán, o Yolanda como lo llamaron localmente, causó una de las emergencias más devastadoras de las últimas décadas en el país: 6.300 personas fueron consideradas fallecidas y más de 1 millón de viviendas fueron destruidas total o parcialmente.

  • La prevención es uno de los pilares de la intervención de Cruz Roja en el país asiático, ya que sufre una media de 20 tifones al año, además de tormentas y terremotos.

8 de noviembre de 2013. El tifón Haiyán golpea Filipinas causando más de 6.300 fallecidos. Un total de 850.000 familias fueron desplazadas y más de 1 millón de viviendas resultaron total o parcialmente destruidas.

Desde el primer momento, Cruz Roja Española, presente en Filipinas desde 1998, apoya a la Cruz Roja Filipina en su respuesta a la emergencia y envía su Unidad de Respuesta a Emergencias (ERU, en sus siglas en inglés) especializada en Agua y Saneamiento, capaz de potabilizar 225.000 litros de agua al día para una población de 15.000 personas.

Finalizada la fase de Ayuda Humanitaria, comienza la etapa de Recuperación Temprana, centrada en la dotación de viviendas nuevas a quienes perdieron sus hogares, así como en la reparación de las casas a quienes necesitan apoyo para la rehabilitación (sin ser precisa la construcción completa del hogar).

Además se ofrece apoyo a las familias para recuperar, fortalecer y diversificar sus fuentes de ingresos, con ayudas económicas para reiniciar la actividad o para emprender pequeñas empresas.

La intervención de Cruz Roja Española se aborda además desde una perspectiva de prevención y fortalecimiento de la Cruz Roja Filipina ante desastres naturales, en un país donde se produce una media de 20 tifones al año, además de tormentas y terremotos.

“La intervención de Cruz Roja Española se prolongará mientras persistan las necesidades de los damnificados por el tifón Haiyán”, apunta Ignacio Román, responsable de Cooperación para Asia de Cruz Roja Española. Esto supone que la Organización estará presente en Filipinas durante, al menos, dos años más, hasta finales de 2016.

Esta intervención de Cruz Roja a largo plazo es posible gracias al apoyo de la Agencia Española de Cooperación Internacional para el Desarrollo (AECID), la Dirección de Ayuda Humanitaria de la Comisión Europea; Cruz Roja Americana y Cruz Roja Canadiense; diferentes administraciones públicas españolas (gobiernos autonómicos, diputaciones, ayuntamientos, etc…) entre otros donantes y colaboradores.

Balance final del Movimiento Internacional de la Cruz Roja y de la Media Luna Roja (incluye la intervención de Cruz Roja Española):

Un año después del tifón Haiyán, podemos resaltar algunas de las cifras más importantes de esta operación humanitaria:

Se repartió ayuda humanitaria a 1.3 millones de personas.

Se distribuyeron 24.000.000 de litros de agua potable.

Se han construido más de 6.000 viviendas.

190 escuelas han sido reconstruidas y equipadas

Balance de la intervención de Cruz Roja Española:

950 viviendas edificadas.

1.480 casas reparadas.

Más de 2.500 personas han recibido apoyo en la recuperación de sus medios de vida.

Philippines: Mercy Corps Expands Mobile Banking in the Philippines

5 November 2014 - 8:12am
Source: Mercy Corps Country: Philippines

Successful typhoon response builds on-ramp to banking services for the poor

Portland, Ore. – One year after Typhoon Haiyan devastated the Philippines, Mercy Corps is helping expand mobile banking solutions in remote, low-income communities hardest hit by the storm. Mercy Corps and BPI Globe BanKO, the Philippines’ first mobile phone-based savings bank, have distributed a total of US $2.3 million in emergency cash assistance to typhoon-affected families since the storm hit 12 months ago.

“By delivering cash assistance through a mobile banking system, our emergency relief efforts not only helped more than 25,000 people rebuild their lives, but also connected many people to banking services for the first time,” says Neal Keny-Guyer, chief executive officer of Mercy Corps. “In a country of 7,000 islands where most people don’t have access to traditional brick-and-mortar banks, thousands can now save money securely, take out affordable loans and purchase insurance.”

Mercy Corps and BanKO have been working together in the Philippines since 2011, providing mobile banking solutions for the poor. Currently they are testing a new small-business loan for typhoon survivors in the Visayas region. Up to 600 BanKO clients have been offered the opportunity to borrow between PHP 1,000 and PHP 5,000 (USD $22 - $112) to expand an existing business or start a new one. If clients from this pilot phase report satisfaction with the terms and processes of the small-business loan, then Mercy Corps and BanKO will make the product available to all new BanKO customers who have been impacted by Typhoon Haiyan.

“Although one year has passed, many people are still struggling,” says Keny-Guyer. “Being able to borrow money at affordable rates and reasonable repayment schedules will help tremendously as people continue to rebuild their livelihoods and gain greater financial security.”

About Mercy Corps Mercy Corps is a leading global humanitarian agency saving and improving lives in the world’s toughest places. mercycorps.org.

Philippines: FACTBOX-Typhoon Haiyan one year on

5 November 2014 - 4:58am
Source: AlertNet Country: Philippines

TACLOBAN, Philippines, Nov 5 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Typhoon Haiyan, the strongest storm on record to ever hit land, struck the central Philippines on Nov. 8, 2013, and swept away practically everything in its path.

Here are some facts and figures about the typhoon and how people are recovering one year after the storm.

  • Haiyan was the deadliest disaster of 2013, leaving 7,200 people dead or missing. The seven-metre storm surges destroyed about 90 percent of the capital of Leyte province, Tacloban, which has a population of about 220,000.

Read the full story on AlertNet.