Humanitarian community ready to help

Workers pile sand bags along the sea wall of Roxas Boulevard as Typhoon Glenda hit Metro Manila early Wednesday.  AFP PHOTO

Workers pile sand bags along the sea wall of Roxas Boulevard as Typhoon Glenda hit Metro Manila early Wednesday.

The humanitarian community is prepared to extend help to people affected by Typhoon Glenda, the first typhoon to wreak widespread damage in the country this year, the United Nations in the Philippines said on Wednesday.

A statement from the agency released hours after the typhoon devastated parts of Metro Manila, Southern Luzon and the Bicol Region added that key people and agencies in the country will work together to help communities hit by the typhoon.

“We are in close communication with respective government counterparts as well as the Humanitarian Country Team and field offices for constant updates on the latest situation,” Luiza Carvalho, the UN humanitarian coordinator, said.

The typhoon affected 37 provinces and at least 43 million people. Of this number, 136,000 households live in areas highly susceptible to landslides and storm surges.

Half of these households, about 342,200 people, are poor, the UN said.

“Evacuations have taken place in vulnerable areas on a needs basis,” it added.

The UN said “government’s new response approach of augmenting the capacity of affected regions with a twin province from an unaffected area will be activated according to needs.”

So far, national and local authorities are responding with teams and goods such as food, non-food items, medicines and health-related aid.

Logistics and telecommunications are available to the most needed areas and two C130 aircraft with helicopters are available for relief operations if required, the UN said.

“A Task Force from the humanitarian community was set up to agree on additional measures to enhance our readiness to respond and remains on standby,” Carvalho said.

the European Union also expressed its solidarity with Filipinos.

European Union Ambassador Guy Ledoux said “the EU stands ready to assist families affected by Typhoon Glenda.”

“A team of echo or humanitarian aid officers in Manila is currently monitoring the situation and assessing the damage of the typhoon,” Ledoux added.

Because the extent of damage is yet to be determined, the EU has no idea what specific assistance to provide, he said.

“We are assessing the situation. We always provide grant under our humanitarian aid program,” Ledoux added.

With Ruffie Nyhl S. Cruz


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1 Comment

  1. Carlos Martin on

    Maybe the Manila Government can develop a wide beach along the seawall of Roxas Boulevard, so that surges of big waves will not reach the seawall. In that respect, some reclamation will have to be done, so that big amount of sand can be poured inside the would-be beach.