Food relief for ‘Pablo’ victims to end in March



DAVAO CITY—The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said it is ending the food relief phase of its assistance to areas ravaged by Typhoon “Pablo” as it prepares to roll out the next phase, rehabilitation.

But Priscilla Razon, DSWD director for Southern Mindanao, sought to give assurances that the agency has sufficient supply of food for residents displaced by this week’s floods brought by rains induced by the cold front.

Razon said the food aid component of the DSWD’s work in Pablo-hit areas will run only until March and be replaced by rehabilitation.

The department, she said, plans to build P4 billion in shelters and implement a cash-for-work program and a food-for-work program for residents who lost homes and livelihood to Pablo.

The government plans to build 34,000 housing units in the provinces of Compostela Valley and Davao Oriental, which bore the brunt of Pablo.

“We have to shift to providing permanent shelter for the victims so they would not stay long in bunkhouses as it will create more problems,” she said.

She said the proposed budget for the shelter and livelihood programs has been submitted to the Department of Budget and Management.

Razon said the Mines and Geosciences Bureau has provided a list of potential relocation sites in the two provinces but the DSWD also has to  wait for input from local governments.

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