Funds raised by the DEC Philippines Typhoon Appeal have helped DEC member agencies and their partners reach over 900,000 people* in the six months since the typhoon hit land on November 7th 2013 (8.40pm GMT on 7 November 2013, 4.40am 8 November 2013 local time).
The Appeal has now raised £94 million with £61 million given to the DEC itself, including £5 million from the Department for International Development, and £33 million given directly to our member agencies. The appeal will remain open until the end of May 2014.
DEC funded aid has so far included food for 243,000 people, cash grants and cash for work for 258,000 people, shelter for 113,000 people, livelihood support, such as providing seeds and fertilisers and replacing fishing boats, to over 59,000 people, and essential household items such as cooking utensils and bedding for over 172,000 people.
DEC Chief Executive Saleh Saeed, who visited the affected areas of the Philippines in February, said:
“The UK public should be very proud that their support for the DEC has allowed our member agencies to play such a crucial role in responding to the devastation left behind by Typhoon Haiyan.
“When I visited the Philippines earlier this year I saw for myself the huge level of need, but also how public donations were already funding essential assistance, such as food and shelter, and how determined people were to start getting back on their feet.
“However, massive challenges remain. Over 1.1 million homes were damaged or destroyed by the typhoon. The coconut industry has been seriously affected, and thousands of fishing boats damaged or destroyed, affecting the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people.
“Over the next three years DEC agencies will undertake a huge recovery programme, with rebuilding homes and livelihoods the priority.”
The scale of need across affected areas remains huge, with millions of people still in need of assistance, yet the UN appeal for $US788 million remains only 56% funded.
An independent review of the DEC response published in May 2014 found the response of member agencies had been good, providing timely and vital assistance such as food, shelter and essential non-food items. The resilience of the Filipino people meant that relative to recent large disasters in other countries, the pace of recovery was swift, with agency staff citing their need to ‘keep up’ and to be flexible in their actions.
The review found agencies worked well with government. Coordination between members was good but could be better, and that coverage of communities was not equal, with more support being provided to higher-profile areas.
One of the largest aid programmes was the provision of unconditional cash grants. These grants were especially welcome among beneficiaries, who said they appreciated the freedom to make choices with the funds. Most recipients spent the cash on basic items such as food and shelter. Others bought medicine or paid school fees.
The review also highlighted some challenges. The use of shelter kits, a relatively innovative approach growing out of experiences in Haiti, represents a welcome advancement in transitional housing. The kits, which contain items such as nails, timber, corrugated iron sheets, plywood and tools and aim to give more people more shelter and quickly, worked well when a full package of support was provided to complete them (including technical training, materials and/or cash). However, in the few cases when support wasn’t provided, vulnerable people were in some cases unable to complete their homes. Member agencies have acknowledged where this is an issue, and are working to address it.
The review also recommended the need to further invest in reconstruction by training up more local carpenters, plumbers and masons to help them build disaster resistant buildings.
Although shelter is now making up the majority of support provided, agencies have also distributed hygiene kits and carried out health promotion, provided education and psychosocial support and helped people to rebuild urban livelihoods.
Member agencies are responding across all affected provinces including Leyte, Cebu, Eastern and Western Samar, Antique, Aklan, Capiz and Iloilo.
Notes to editors
* The figure of 900,000 people assisted with DEC funding has been calculated by totalling the number of beneficiaries reached using DEC funds as reported by each of the DEC’s 13 member agencies. While there should be very little or no double counting of the same aid deliveries, in some cases some unavoidable double counting will occur where different agencies have provided different kinds of help to the same people. For example, Oxfam may have provided water and the Red Cross emergency shelter materials to the same community. The figure is intended to convey the scale of the aid response by our members and their partners rather than to represent a precise number of people helped. We have not compared it to the total number of people in need of aid and would discourage others from doing so.
- For a copy of the Philippines Typhoon Haiyan response review, contact the DEC press office on 020 7837 0200 or 07930 999 014 (out of hours)
- The DEC brings 13 leading UK aid charities together in times of crisis: ActionAid UK, Age International, British Red Cross, CAFOD, CARE International, Christian Aid, Concern Worldwide, Islamic Relief, Oxfam, Plan UK, Save the Children, Tearfund and World Vision; all collectively raising money to reach those in need quickly.
- Donations can be made at www.dec.org.uk or 0370 60 60 900
- To donate £5 by text the word SUPPORT to 70000. The full £5 will go to the DEC Philippines Typhoon Appeal. Donors must be 16 years or over and have the bill payer’s permission. Texts are free and donations will be added to the bill.
- The Emergency Appeals Alliance (EAA) brings together organisations of various countries, which launch fundraising appeals following humanitarian disasters: AGIRE in Italy, Aktion Deutschland Hilft in Germany, Consortium 1212 in Belgium, Disasters Emergency Committee in the UK, The Humanitarian Coalition in Canada, Radiohjälpen in Sweden and Swiss Solidarity. In the Netherlands, Samenwerkende Hulporganisaties/Giro 555 is an associated member. The funds raised in each country are attributed to various partner NGOs which carry out humanitarian projects in the affected areas. Most of the organisations work in close cooperation with the national broadcasting system in order to reduce fundraising costs and increase efficiency of the national appeal.