In November 2013, the Philippines was hit by Typhoon Haiyan, a devastating disaster for its inhabitants. 16 million people were directly affected; thousands lost family members, their homes, their lodgings and their jobs. Six months after the passage of the typhoon, millions of people are still in a precarious situation. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, one of the rare organisations to deliver humanitarian assistance across all affected islands, launched an ambitious rehabilitation plan for the survivors.
The Monegasque Red Cross responded immediately and relayed this appeal to the population. Thanks to the donations received, it was able to hand over 357,450€ to its partners at the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), between November 2013 and April 2014.
To date, 315 million Swiss Francs (258 million Euros) of funds has been raised by the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement worldwide, making the Principality, in proportion to its size, one of the most generous States for this disaster, thanks to an incredible show of solidarity. In total, 320 million Swiss Francs (262 million Euros) is needed to complete the recovery plan, which will run over a three-year period and provide assistance to 775,000 people.
“Affected communities have shown remarkable strength and many are on the road to recovery. However, high levels of pre-existing poverty are holding people back and in some areas basic services have not been re-established”, says Richard Gordon, Chairman of the Philippine Red Cross. “Our recovery work will focus on restoring shelter, livelihoods and access to health care, to help affected communities overcome the hardships of the past six months and become self-reliant again.”
Since the disaster struck, the Philippine Red Cross, the IFRC, the ICRC and over 50 national societies from around the world have between them distributed emergency relief, including food, shelter items and cash, to more than 1 million people. The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement has distributed cash grants to 75,000 households and has met 25% of emergency shelter needs, providing tents, tarpaulins and other materials to almost 140,000 households. Support has already begun to roll out to cover the sustainable needs of all the families affected. The reconstruction of healthcare facilities and water networks in affected areas is well under way, as are livelihood support programmes through training and the development of new economic activities.
Finally, the project will enhance the Philippine Red Cross’ capacity to respond to future disasters through targeted skills training for volunteers and strengthening expertise in disaster management and disaster risk reduction.
“We are very proud of the solidarity and good cooperation the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement has demonstrated” says Gwendolyn Pang, Secretary General of the Philippine Red Cross, even adding: “Our most unique asset is our volunteer base”. Over 8,000 Red Cross volunteers have been at the forefront of the emergency response, alongside the hundreds of international and national staff deployed to the affected area. »