The need for help is enormous after the powerful typhoon Rai (Odette) hit the Philippines three weeks ago and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) has through the organization Islamic Relief donated SEK 4.5 million to provide humanitarian support to 11,750 people.
Last week, the organization said in this press release, that the support goes to necessities such as containers for cooking, clean drinking water, repair kits, protective equipment against covid-19, and protection against violence and abuse.
Elisabet Hedin, deputy head of the humanitarian unit at Sida said, “The Philippines is one of the world’s most affected areas by climate change and is often affected by typhoons. Around 631,000 people have lost or been forced to leave their homes and belongings, and now need quick help so that their situation does not worsen further.”
Fifteen typhoons in 2021
It is now just over three weeks ago that the Philippines was hit by typhoon Rai, the fifteenth in 2021, and the hardest hit is the archipelagos Vinsayas and Mindanao. This time the typhoon struck overland on nine occasions with very strong winds of up to 260 km / h, which caused great devastation. Trees were uprooted and power lines blew down, and huge amounts of rain led to floods and landslides. In comparison with the cyclones that hit the Atlantic, Rai’s wind strength corresponds to a hurricane of category five, which is the highest category on the scale.
2.6 million people were affected
In the wake of the typhoon, more than 478,000 homes have been completely or partially destroyed, hundreds of people have died and many have been injured. 2.6 million people are in need of humanitarian aid.
“Many are already poor and have also been hit hard by the negative economic consequences of the pandemic so that now also affected by the typhoon is very serious,” said Elisabet Hedin.
Typhoon Rai has further exacerbated the negative effects on the economy of covid-19 in the affected communities that need food, water, shelter, and emergency protection. The typhoon has caused great damage and losses in fisheries and agricultural production, which will reduce the supply of food in the areas. Therefore, it is also important to start farming again to be able to grow crops.
SEK 4.5 million for Sabba initiatives
Sida’s support of 4.5 million was granted through the Fund for Rapid Response to Humanitarian Emergencies. These supports are distributed between different organizations that Sida has previously collaborated with and knows well.
Islamic Relief’s efforts will focus on, among other things, secure food supply, access to clean drinking water, hygiene, emergency accommodation, and repairs, as well as psychosocial support and protection against violence and abuse. The goal is to reach 11,750 people in 2,350 households in the less-noticed but hard-hit province of Surigao Del Norte.