7 December 2013 (OCHA) – According to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), approximately 4 million people remain displaced as a result of Typhoon Haiyan, including 94,310 people living in 385 evacuation centres (ECs). The number of people living in evacuation centres has decreased, mostly due to the increased availability of shelter materials provided by aid organizations or from salvaging. The reopening of classes in schools that previously hosted ECs has also contributed to this decline. Many affected people have begun returning to their homes and are either rebuilding their houses or setting up makeshift shelters. Others are staying with friends and family in affected areas and in urban centres such as Cebu and Manila. DSWD has provided each departing IDP with a Family Assistance Card, making them eligible to receive assistance in the barangay where they had lived prior to the typhoon.
Response activities continue to expand. An initial tranche of 7,000 tons of rice is in-country and will be distributed to over 150,000 households in Samar and Leyte during December. So far, 4,340 tons of rice, 153 tons of high- energy biscuits and 1.2 tons of Plumpy’Doz (a specialized nutrition product) have been dispatched, sufficient to feed 3 million people. A fleet of 40 trucks has been contracted which will be managed from Tacloban, and available for all clusters to use for transportation of relief supplies across the affected areas in Eastern Visayas. Storage facilities for the humanitarian community have been augmented through a logistics hub set up in Palo, outside Tacloban, and seven mobile storage units.
Consultations with affected communities in Region VIII (Eastern Visayas) indicate that, beyond the basic needs of food, water and temporary shelter, the highest priority needs for adults are financial assistance, stable housing, including tools and materials, and livelihoods. The top priority needs for children and adolescents are additional food and education. Elderly men and women have also signaled a lack health programmes that address ageing and pre-existing conditions, as well as the need for culturally appropriate clothing. It is a priority for all groups to receive clothes, and telephones and radios as a means of receiving information.
In Eastern Visayas, different parts of the affected areas find themselves in different phases of the response. While Ormoc is transitioning to recovery, Tacloban is focusing on both humanitarian assistance and restoration of livelihoods. Guiuan continues to focus on core humanitarian needs. Extensive shelter gaps exist in Tacloban City and along the west coast of Leyte, while duplication and over-supply of shelter assistance is reported in certain locations along the east coast of Leyte. Emergency shelter is required in Bilaran Island where an estimated 23,000 households are yet to receive assistance. The Department of Health is concerned over the water quality in Tacloban, Ormoc and Guiuan, and an increase in acute diarrhoeal cases has been reported in many locations. Psychosocial and mental health support is needed as a number of suicide attempts have been reported. Specialized support is also required for traumatized children. There is a reported increase in the number of adolescents and minors migrating to Manila in search of employment.
In Central Visayas, while recovery and reconstruction have started in all affected municipalities, partners are addressing residual humanitarian needs, primarily in food, emergency health, WASH and shelter. Of the 12,000 people who arrived from Eastern Visayas following the typhoon, only 130 remain in two ECs in Cebu and Lapu-Lapu.
In Western Visayas, a joint Canadian Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) / Inter-Agency assessment identified food security and health concerns in remote mountain communities of southern Aklan, western Capiz and central Antique. Partners are currently identifying options for helicopter relief deliveries. In view of the oil spill in Estancia, Iloilo Province, and as requested by the Government of the Philippines, Japan has dispatched an oil cleaning expert team. [more]