In 2014, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) intensified its operations to support the recovery of people affected by previous disasters, specifically Typhoon Bopha which struck eastern Mindanao on December 2012; the 2013 typhoons and floods season which devastated parts of eastern Luzon; the Central Visayas earthquake on October 2013 which destroyed a large part of the province of Bohol; and most notably, Typhoon Haiyan which struck in November 2013 and killed more than 6,800 people and affected more than six million people across several provinces.
By April of 2014, operations for the 2013 typhoons and floods were completed, wherein International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) supported PRC in providing shelter assistance to more than 300 families and livelihoods assistance to more than 1,100 families. By October 2014, operations for Typhoon Bopha were also completed, with IFRC supporting PRC to provide core shelter to 1,200 families, shelter repair assistance to more than 8,100 families and livelihoods assistance to some 2,800 families.
PRC was also able to develop a model for the organization’s approach to resilience programming and its disaster risk reduction (DRR) and management framework during the first half of 2014. Furthermore, to improve the capacities of its staff and volunteers, the National Society, with IFRC support, attended and/or hosted trainings and workshops within and outside the country. To boost the National Society’s capacity in responding to future disasters, IFRC and other Partner National Societies (PNS) also supported PRC in getting disaster response equipment and training.
In response to the annual monsoon and typhoon season, PRC heightened its efforts in disaster preparedness, which included information dissemination on DRR as well as strengthening its response capacities. In July 2014, Typhoon Rammasun, locally known as Glenda, struck provinces in Bicol, east of Luzon. The typhoon caused extensive damage – killing more than 100 people. As the typhoon struck the province, Mayon Volcano in Albay was also threatening to erupt, and residents within a seven-kilometre area were evacuated.
Several weather disturbances affected the Philippines after Rammasun, with Typhoon Hagupit striking the Central Visayas region – including Typhoon Haiyan-affected areas; and Tropical Storm Jangmi (locally Seniang) which killed more than 30 people in eastern Mindanao. As PRC had significant focus on disaster response operations, some resources mobilized under this appeal in support of long-term National Society development, were implemented under Typhoon Bopha, Central Visayas Earthquake and Typhoon Haiyan operations.