March 20, 2015
The next phase of the Catholic Church’s rehabilitation program for Typhoon ‘Yolanda’ (Haiyan) survivors will focus on interventions geared towards sustaining resilient communities.
NASSA/Caritas Philippines Executive Secretary Fr. Edwin Gariguez made the announcement as the REACH Philippines program (Recovery Assistance to Vulnerable Communities Affected by Typhoon Haiyan) is set to enter the second phase beginning April of this year.
“If the first phase of our interventions centered in building back structures and systems destroyed by the calamity, this time we shall be focusing our efforts on various sustainability measures. We want to empower the communities by putting emphasis on capacity building and community-managed disaster risk reduction activities in order to prevent disaster nightmares such as Yolanda from happening again,” Gariguez stressed.
Among the proposed interventions is the formation and organization of various groups within the community that would be in-charge of the maintenance and repair of the shelters, and water and sanitation facilities. There would also be financial management trainings for livelihood beneficiaries, ecosystem restoration, and forging of long-term and deeper partnerships with local government units on disaster risk reduction management.
“These are just among the highlights of the second year proposal. But considering the magnitude of the devastation, we would still continue to provide more water and sanitation facilities, houses and livelihoods especially to those who have not yet received any aid from the government and other non-government organizations,” the church official explained.
As of February, NASSA/Caritas Philippines has already constructed 2,241 disaster resilient shelters, repaired 264 houses and built 3,540 various water and sanitation facilities. There is also an on-going construction of 264 more houses and repair of 98 units. It has also provided various livelihood interventions such as fishing, farming, livestock and micro-enterprise to 5,818 households.
NASSA/Caritas Philippines is the social action arm of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines
The REACH Philippines program, which started in April of 2014, is a three-year program deemed as the most massive recovery program led by the Catholic Church in nine provinces severely-affected by the typhoon namely: Leyte, Western Samar, Eastern Samar, Palawan, Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo and Cebu.
It was also the fastest emergency appeal responded to by more than 30 Caritas Internationalis member organizations with budget for the first year alone amounting to P587 million.
For more information, please contact:
Jing Rey Henderson
Senior Communications Officer
Communications Office for Emergency Response