Philippines: Typhoons and floods 2013 - Emergency appeal n° MDRPH012 Operation update n°1

Period covered: 26 August to 4 September 2013

Appeal target (current): CHF 1,681,554

Appeal coverage: The appeal is 20 per cent covered in hard and soft pledges. Donations are encouraged to enable Philippine Red Cross to meet the needs of affected families.

Appeal history:

  • This emergency appeal was launched on a preliminary basis on 26 August 2013 for CHF 1,681,554 to assist 15,000 families (75,000 people) in eight months.
  • CHF 319,766 was advanced from the IFRC Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) to initiate distributions and to support detailed assessments.
  • This operation update provides an overview of the situation, general progress made in relief and the progress towards preparing a detailed emergency appeal.

Summary: Starting 18 August 2013, continuous monsoon rains fuelled by Tropical Storm Trami (local name: Maring) brought flooding in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces. The extensive flooding came a week after Typhoon Utor (local name: Labuyo) slammed into Luzon with a severe impact. The combined effects of the two events have left at least 38 people dead, damaged some 23,000 homes, and destroyed livelihoods worth more than 1.5 billion pesos across five regions. Two weeks on, floodwaters have receded in most of the affected areas – especially in Metro Manila – and many families that were displaced have returned or are returning to their homes. However, portions of Bataan, Bulacan, Pampanga, Pangasinan and Rizal provinces remain flooded to date, although the water levels are not life-threatening. Some of these areas remain flooded owing to more rains caused by a new system, Tropical Storm Kong-Rey (local name: Nando), which hovered over the eastern seaboard of Luzon Island from 26 to 28 August 2013.

The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has been responding to the needs of the most affected people from the onset of the severe weather events and has so far served ready-to-eat meals to some 56,000 persons, distributed food packages to 24,000 families, provided non-food items to 9,600 families, distributed more than 4,600 bottles of safe drinking water to families in need and conducted health and hygiene promotion for the benefit of some 2,300 families. The PRC response continues, with some 3,500 staff and volunteers so far mobilized for action. The National Society is being supported in its response by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), which launched a preliminary emergency appeal aimed at mobilizing resources to deliver humanitarian assistance to 15,000 affected families.

Meanwhile, assessment teams that were deployed to determine the nature and extent of needs in the affected provinces of Bataan, Bulacan, Cavite, Pampanga, Pangasinan and Rizal have completed their groundwork. An initial analysis of their findings highlights immediate needs in the sectors of relief, health, water and sanitation, shelter and livelihoods. They also make a strong case for continuing investing in preparedness measures as well as strengthening the capacity of PRC chapters to enable them to respond better to future potential disasters. Discussions with PRC are ongoing, and the assessment findings are informing the process of designing the emergency appeal which will be issued early in the third week of September.

Some partners have already made pledges to support this operation. The pledges currently being processed are from the American Red Cross, Canadian Red Cross/Canadian government, Danish Red Cross, Japanese Red Cross Society and Swiss Red Cross. Once processed, the pledges will place the appeal coverage at approximately 20 per cent. Additional and timely support from partners is of essence to enable PRC to deliver timely assistance to the affected people. On behalf of the Philippine Red Cross, IFRC would like to thank all partners who have so far contributed (pledges being processed) for their generous donations to this appeal.