ACT Appeal Philippines: Assistance to Typhoon survivors ASPH32

Report
from Action by Churches Together International
Published on 31 Jul 2003
Appeal Target: US$ 79,670
Geneva, July 31, 2003 - The Philippines has been hit by several typhoons of which typhoon Imbudo has been the most destructive. Again, many of the poor and marginalised regions have been hit, severely affecting the poor and vulnerable communities and people. While typhoons and floods are yearly occurrences in the country, its effect has aggravated over the years, increasing poverty and decreasing the coping mechanisms of the poor.

ACT member, the National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) has already responded to some of the most basic needs of at least 2,500 families affected by typhoon Linfa, utilising its available funds for typhoon and flood response.

NCCP is now appealing for funds to assist an additional 9,500 families in different regions through the following activities:

- Crisis Phase: distribution of food and non food items and providing medical assistance
- Post Crisis Phase: food for work, repair of community facilities and agricultural assistance.

Project Completion Date: 31 January 2004

Summary of Appeal Targets, Pledges/Contributions Received and Balance Requested (US$)

Total Appeal Target(s)
79,670
Less: Pledges/Contr. Recd.
0
Balance Requested from ACT Network
79,670

Please kindly send your contributions to the following ACT bank account:

Account Number - 240-432629.60A (USD)
Account Name: ACT - Action by Churches Together
UBS AG
8, rue du Rhône
P.O. Box 2600
1211 Geneva 4
SWITZERLAND
Swift address: UBSW CHZH12A

Please also inform the Finance Officer Jessie Kgoroeadira (direct tel. +4122/791.60.38, e-mail address jkg@act-intl.org) of all pledges/contributions and transfers, including funds sent direct to the implementers, now that the Pledge Form is no longer attached to the Appeal.

We would appreciate being informed of any intent to submit applications for EU, USAID and/or other back donor funding and the subsequent results. We thank you in advance for your kind cooperation.

Thor-Arne Prois
Director, ACT

I. REQUESTING ACT MEMBER

  • The National Council of Churches in the Philippines - Program Unit on Faith, Witness and Service Relief and Rehabilitation
II. IMPLEMENTING ACT MEMBER & PARTNER INFORMATION

The National Council of Churches in the Philippines (NCCP) was formed in 1963 as a conciliar body composed of Churches and organisations that believed in Jesus Christ as the foundation of their being. The NCCP's primary task is to foster among all Christians the unity which is God's will, seeking to honour Him more worthily, and desiring to witness to Him more effectively.

Relief and Rehabilitation is a special program of 'Faith, Witness and Service', which is involved in effective disaster management work with survivors of both natural and human-made emergencies. The work includes relief and rehabilitation assistance, education and training on disaster management, networking and advocacy on disaster-related issues. Its network in the regions consists of church leaders, clergy and lay persons from the NCCP member churches, church-related organisations and peoples organisations. Most of them are organised through the Regional Ecumenical Councils (RECs) which have been trained in disaster management and eventually became the local implementing partners.

The NCCP is registered as a relief agency with the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the Relief and Rehabilitation unit is staffed by a licensed social worker (a requirement by the government to head a relief and rehabilitation agency/program), a driver -warehouseman. The personnel of the Faith, Witness and Service who are also development workers provide staff support.

In the regional or provincial level, the implementing partners of NCCP are:

a. NCCP Member Churches:

  • Convention of Philippine Baptist Churches (CPBC)
  • Episcopal Church in the Philippines (ECP)
  • Iglesia Evangelica Metodista en Las Islas Filipinas (IEMELIF)
  • Iglesia Filipina Independiente (IFI)
  • Iglesia Unida Ekyumenical (IUE)
  • United Church of Christ in the Philippines (UCCP)
  • The United Methodist Church (UMC)
  • Lutheran Church in the Philippines (LCP)
  • The Salvation Army (TSA)
b. Regional Ecumenical Councils:
  • Pangasinan, Ilocos, La Union, Abra Regional Ecumenical Assembly (PILAREA)
  • Regional Ecumenical Council in the Cordillera (RECCORD)
  • Central Luzon Ecumenical Council (CLEC)
  • Metro Manila Regional Ecumenical Council (MMREC)
  • Bicol Regional Ecumenical Council (BREC)
  • Western Visayas Ecumenical Council (WVEC)
III. DESCRIPTION OF EMERGENCY SITUATION

Recently the Philippines has been hit by several typhoons of which typhoon Imbudo has been the most destructive.

On May 25, typhoon Linfa (local name: Chedeng) with gusts of up to 90 kph swept down the northwest coast of Luzon and slashed Metro Manila, Central Luzon, Northern Luzon and parts of Western Visayas. Linfa, which was swirling over 200-km radius dumped heavy rains, flooding vast tracks of agricultural land, destroying infrastructure, crops and houses and uprooting trees. At least 42 persons died due to electrocution, asphyxiation in a landslide, drowning, lightning and of severe cold. Sixteen others were reported injured. Fifteen evacuation centers - 12 in Metro Manila and 3 in Northern Luzon- were set up for the displaced families.

Belated reports from the Office of Civil Defense said that two persons died during the brief stay of tropical storm: "Nangka" (local codename "Dodong") which followed a few days later.

On June 16, another tropical storm "Soudelor" (local name: Egay) hit the country. Although the typhoon had not hit the land, strong winds toppled power lines and flooded many parts of Samar and Leyte (Eastern Visayas). Typhoon Soudelor had maximum sustained winds of 85 kilometer per hour near the center and gusts of winds up to 100 kph. About 11,500 people were stranded for 48 hours in 2 major bus-ferry terminals connecting the Bicol region and Eastern Visayas due to bad weather. The people suffered greatly from over-exposure to the elements. Parts of Northern Luzon likewise suffered from the heavy rainfall causing flooding in the coastal and low-lying areas. The official death toll was listed at 10, four of them children.

Thousands of families in Ormoc City and in other parts of the eastern Visayas were dislocated when another menacing typhoon "Gilas" dumped heavy rains. Five persons died when a landslide hit a residential area in Sorsogon in the Bicol Region. As tropical depression Gilas slowed down, another tropical storm entered the country through the eastern part of the Visayas.

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) issued a "Severe Weather Bulletin" on July 22, 2003 on Typhoon Imbudo (local codename: Harurot). The highest storm signal, was raised in three Northern provinces. The regions badly affected are Region 1 (Ilocos Region), Cordillera Administrative Region, Region III (Central Luzon), Region V (Bicol Region) and parts of the Visayas. Typhoon Imbudo had strong sustained winds of 190 kph near the center and gusts of winds up to 230 kph. The strong winds and heavy rainfall of Super Typhoon Imbudo, which weather officials said was the strongest to hit the Philippines in five years (since 1998), caused floods and flashfloods. It toppled more power lines and stranded thousands of passengers. In a span of eight weeks, Typhoon Imbudo was the fifth destructive typhoon that struck the country and brought damage to many of the same areas.

Based on the July 24, 2003 data released by the Department of Social Welfare and Development, at least 172, 389 families or 829,785 persons were affected in 448 barangays in the eight (8) affected regions. Around 34,669 houses were partially damaged while 10,091 were totally damaged. Sixty-seven (67) persons died, forty-nine (49) persons injured and three (3) others declared missing.

Table 1. Latest status of damage and effect of Typhoon Imbudo, as of July 24, 2003

Region
# of Families Affected
# of Persons Affected
Damaged Houses
Partially Damaged
Dead
Injured
Missing
I
18,834
104,447
68
402
3
3
-
II
94,434
440,852
9,483
32,040
6
29
1
III
35,855
168,668
36
1,010
-
-
-
IV
80
239
10
14
5
9
-
V
3,441
4,627
-
-
-
-
-
VI
5,555
27,775
-
-
-
-
-
NCR
58
308
15
-
-
-
-
CAR
14,132
82,869
479
1,203
1
8
2
Total
172,389
829,785
10,091
34,669
15
49
3

According to the Department of Agriculture, Peso1 billion worth of crops in Northern Luzon were destroyed, raising concern about a possible corn shortage in October. Cagayan and Isabela which are the main corn-producing areas in Luzon were hardest hit. Almost Peso 10 million worth of crops were destroyed in Northern Benguet, the country's salad bowl.

In Maguindanao (Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao), close to 200,000 persons have been directly affected when flashfloods hit 18 of the 26 towns because of the continuous heavy downpour in the northern and southern hinterlands. At least eight persons died, mostly elderly and children. The heavy rainfall was not due to the typhoon itself but to its tail end when it entered the Eastern Visayas region.

General Information on Areas Affected

Region I (Ilocos Region)

Region I in the northwestern coast of the island of Luzon, consists of four provinces: Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union and Pangasinan. The area is rich in non-metallic minerals for agricultural and industrial use. The region ranks number one in tobacco production. Other agriculture products are rice, corn, banana and coconut. Because of its natural and human resources, and in line with the government's export-oriented development strategy, the region is being developed to form part of the Northern Luzon Growth Quadrangle.

Region II (Cagayan Valley)

Region II (Cagayan Valley) in the northernmost part of Luzon is bounded by three bodies of water. It consist of five provinces: Batanes, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Viscaya and Quirino. Cagayan Valley has a total land area of 2,683,758 hectares, 64% of which is forestland. The Cagayan River Basin, the country's largest river basin is found in the region. The main source of livelihood is agricultural. Big logging companies continue to exploit the remaining forest resources in the area. Although the region is rich in resources, its agricultural-based production is controlled by a few big landlords.

Region III (Central Luzon)

Central Luzon ('lahar'area) straddles the central portion of the island of Luzon. It consists of six provinces: Bataan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac, Zambales and Bulacan. The region is known as the rice bowl of the country. It also known for its production of coffee, sugarcane, poultry and livestock.

The Mt. Pinatubo eruption in 1992 covered almost 52,320 hectares with 'lahar'. This has contributed to yearly flooding as a result of heavy silt deposites in the water tributaries. At least 47, 625 hectares has been determined to be covered by 'lahar' and are hazard-prone.

Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR)

The Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) lies at the northern tip of the Luzon Island. It consists of five provinces that used to be parts of the Ilocos Region (Abra, Benguet and Mt. Province) and Cagayan Valley (Ifugao and Cagayan Valley). On 15 July 1987, by virtue of Executive Order 220, the Cordillera Administrative Region was created.

The region's terrain is rugged with mountain ranges as high as 7,000 feet. Forest covers most of its lands and mineral resources abound in these mountains. In fact most of the country's mineral reserves and production, particularly gold and copper, are found in the region. The cool climate of the region is suitable for vegetable crops, thus produces most of the vegetable needs of the country. The region has a rich cultural heritage, home to ten ethno-linguistic groups. The "Summer Capital of the Country", Baguio City and other major tourist spots are found in the region.

National Capital Region

The National Capital Region (NCR), also known as the Metro Manila Region, consists of eight cities and nine municipalities. The cities are Manila, Kalookan, Quezon, Pasay, Mandaluyong, Makati, Pasig and Muntinlupa. The NCR serves as the economic and political center of the country. The head offices of financial institutions and multi-national corporations are located in the region. It is likewise the seat of power in the country.

Region IV (Southern Tagalog)

Region IV (Southern Tagalog) consists of eleven provinces (Aurora, Batangas, Cavite, Laguna, Quezon, Rizal, Oriental and Occidental Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, Palawan). The government's industrial project CALABARZON, has angered many of the region's people. Massive land conversion has increased land costs to enormous proportions and displaced communities. Land conversion threatens food security. The region ranks third in rice production and ranks second in coconut production. It also ranks first in livestock and poultry raising. Southern Tagalog registers the highest unemployment and underemployment rates and ranks among the highest in poverty indices.

Region V (Bicol Region)

The Bicol Region (Region V) is a sprawling peninsula of four provinces (Camarines Norte, Camarines Sur, Albay and Sorsogon) and two island provinces (Catanduanes and Masbate) south of Manila. It is one of the most impoverished regions in the country because of poor road networks, mountainous topography, inadequate support from the national government, and with an almost destroyed environment. The major livelihood activities are agriculture, fishing and commerce. The major crops are rice, corn, indigenous crops, and other agricultural produce. The region also produces abaca (Manila hemp) and other derivatives which are exported worldwide. The region is also located in the path of typhoons, most of which are destructive, which adds to the woes of the people.

Region VI (Western Visayas)

Western Visayas is one of three regions in the Visayas. It is composed of six provinces, namely, Negros Occidental, Iloilo, Guimaras, Capiz, Antique, Aklan. The region is rich in natural resources, namely forest land and agricultural land, fish and minerals. These are also the primary sources of the people's livelihood. However, poverty, population pressure, unemployment, increasing economic disparity between social groups, mismanagement and over-exploitation have resulted in the depletion and degradation of the resources.

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