The media has moved on, but life is not normal for communities in central Philippines hit by Typhoon Haiyan on 8th November. Millions have lost their homes, as 1.1 million houses damaged, more than 50% of these were completely destroyed. Most areas are still without power, western islands and remote areas are still without water supply and wells have been contamined with salt water.
Anglican agencies are working closely with local partners to bring emergency relief. This is critically needed at this time, as some international agencies – including foreign militaries and international health teams – prepare to leave. Local partners play a critical role at this time, when response efforts still need to expand to more remote areas, UNOCHA highlighted this: ”Participating local organizations often have better access to remote areas than international partners.” Give generously to Anglican appeals by following the links below.
As life-saving needs persist, longer term work is already being planned in affected areas: food, shelter, recovery of livelihoods and the restoration of essential community services. The Episcopal Church in the Philippines (ECP) will be working with communities to help them become self reliant again. Once their plans are finalised the Anglican Alliance will be launching an appeal for this ECP work.
Floyd Lalwet last week talked about ECP’s experience supporting communities to bring farmland back into production, through distribution seed and tools, food and seed for work, also support for alternative livelihoods once the land has been planted through loans, to enable more stable and secure livelihoods.
“The church is one of few actors left after the emergency. Already some agencies going home” he said. It is also well placed to work closely with the government, which has formed a high-level national taskforce to ensure fast track transition from relief efforts to rehabilitation and rebuilding of the affected areas.
Read about the ongoing support that Anglican agencies are giving national partners in the Philippines:
Lina Magallanes, Anglican Board of Mission’s (ABM) Asia Program Coordinator, who is currently in the Philippines, was able to meet with partner staff and learn about their relief efforts following the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda). Read the story here, and support their appeal.
Naba Gurung of the Primates World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) reports that the National Council of Churches of the Philippines (NCCP)—a PWRDF partner and ACT Alliance member—are distributing food to families affected by the storm with packages containing: 8kg of rice, a cup of beans, five tins of sardines, dried fish, a packet of biscuits, a bottle of oil, a cup of sugar and salt. For their appeal, click here.
Kirsten Mutt of Episcopal Relief and Development (ERD) says “we are working closely with ECP as they plan restoration of community livelihoods. We are particularly concerned about rehabilitating homes and ensuring the vulnerable are not overlooked.” For their appeal, click here.
Other agencies are also working with affected communities, including Five Talents and Mission of Seafarers.
The magnitude of the devastation caused by typhoon Haiyan is hard to believe. UNOCHA’s latest summary is: The humanitarian situation in the areas devastated by Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) is catastrophic. Over 13 million people are affected, including some five million children. More than 4 million men, women and children have been displaced, many desperate for food, safe drinking water, basic shelter and sanitation. Full details can be found in UNCHO’s latest situation report, here.