Philippines: US relief help now at $30M

Manila (8 December) - United States (US) Government ups its food aid in its disaster relief and recovery aid to the Philippines by another $ 10 Million, U.S. Ambassador Kristie A. Kenney announced.

The additional $10 million brings the total US help to $30 M. According to reports, Kenney said "the additional assistance will help address the continuing needs of our friends in the Philippines, including the needs of communities not far from where we are standing."

Kenney was in Baguio then, standing not more that a few kilometers from where the worst landslide of the year left many people permanently buried.

Immediately after Tropical Storm Ondoy, Typhoon Pepeng, and Typhoon Santi ravaged the Philippines, the United States provided more than $14 million in rescue and relief aid to help over 10 million victims of the storms.

Then on November 12, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodman Clinton announced an additional $5.2 million in disaster relief and recovery assistance during her visit to the Philippines.

The additional assistance unveiled by the Secretary will meet vital education, water and sanitation, health, and disaster preparedness needs.

The WFP logistics hub is part of the U.S. Government effort to address accessibility concerns in the northern areas of Luzon. Many barangays are still isolated by damaged bridges and severe landslides.

The WFP received $1 million to provide logistics support in the distribution of relief goods and much needed supplies.

Through the assistance, the Philippine government and humanitarian agencies are now able provide assistance to more than 2 million people.

"I commend Filipinos and our international partners for their long-term commitment to help those most affected by the storms. As we move our efforts from relief to rehabilitation and recovery, logistics will increasingly become a key component in future undertakings," said Ambassador Kenney.

Ambassador Kenney will visit Barangay Little Kibungan in La Trinidad, Municipality of Benguet Province, one of the hardest hit areas in the Cordillera Administrative Region due to a landslide that killed 77 people on October 8.

Ambassador Kenney will also participate in the handover of relief items provided with U.S. Government logistical support to 142 Little Kibungan residents still displaced from their homes. (PIA)