Flash Appeal for Philippines 2009

16 November 2009

Tropical Storm Ketsana, locally known as "Ondoy," swept across Metro Manila and parts of Central Luzon on Saturday, 26 September 2009, bringing a month's worth of rain in just 12 hours.  The waters rose so fast that people living in low lying areas were caught unaware and had to stay on the roofs of their houses to avoid being swept away by the floods.  According to the Philippine National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC), as of 1 October, 277 people have been reported killed, and over two and a half million have been affected by Ketsana.  686,699 people are sheltering in 726 evacuation centres, with another 350,075 people receiving Government assistance outside them.  About 80% of Manila, home to some 12 million people, was left underwater by the storm.  The numbers of people affected, and of people displaced, have continued to rise as information has come in from previously inaccessible areas. 

Government agencies responded swiftly to the storm, launching extensive search and rescue operations and releasing emergency relief stocks.  However, the extensive damage caused by the floods meant that capacities of many local and national response agencies have been exhausted.  On 28 September 2009, the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GoRP) represented by the Chair of the NDCC requested, through the United Nations Resident Coordinator (UN RC), the assistance of the international community in responding to the effects of the storm.  The Department of Foreign Affairs through its Missions in Geneva and New York and other foreign service posts are actively supporting efforts to facilitate the appeal process and other international humanitarian assistance measures.

Teams including Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) cluster leads and NDCC member agencies carried out initial rapid assessments of several areas of Metro Manila on 28 and 29 September.  Initial results indicate that priority needs are food, drinking water, non-food items (NFIs) (household items, bedding, and clothing).  There is also an urgent need for water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH), health including reproductive heath, and targeted protection interventions, and the establishment of camp management structures in 561 evacuation centres.  Access to the worst-affected areas and the restoration of water services and electricity will require extensive clearing operations.  The restoration of schools being used as evacuation centres, and the provision of education and protection to displaced and affected children are also priorities.  The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), through its Disaster Management Committee, expressed its support and solidarity with the Philippines in the aftermath of Ketsana’s devastation.

This Appeal is planned to last for six months, has been developed in partnership with the NDCC and provides the framework for a common inter-agency understanding of needs and priorities based on the best information currently available.[1]  In recognition of the gaps in this shared understanding, due in part to the inaccessibility of some of the worst-affected areas, this Flash Appeal will be revised in about one month, when it will present a more complete picture of current humanitarian needs, including in terms of early recovery.  To address the most urgent needs, a request has been made to the Central Emergency Response Fund, and is under consideration as of the publication of this Appeal.  To support the Government, the international humanitarian community, including NGOs, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and United Nations agencies, is seeking$[2]74,021,809 to address the immediate needs of approximately 1,000,000 of the 2,507,000 people that the Government currently reports have been affected by the tropical storm and floods. 

[1]Two response plans (Food and Livelihoods) currently only have three month timeframes.

[2]All dollar signs in this document denote United States dollars.  Funding for this appeal should be reported to the Financial Tracking Service (FTS, fts@reliefweb.int), which will display its requirements and funding on the CAP 2009 page. 

Document History

16 November 2009

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