UN office seeks P 1.6-B funding for Mindanao quake victims

UN office seeks P 1.6-B funding for Mindanao quake victims

/ 05:01 AM January 30, 2020

MAKILALA, COTABATO—The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Ocha) is seeking $31.8 million (P1.6 billion) in funding to help thousands of families affected by the series of powerful earthquakes that rocked central Mindanao last year.

Mark Bidder, Ocha Philippines head, said aid organizations have so far secured at least $5.7 million (P289 million), or 18 percent of the total requirement.

Bidder noted that the new appeal for funds is needed by humanitarian partners “to support the government-led response and meet priority needs” in the areas of protection, emergency shelter, water, sanitation and hygiene, education, early recovery and livelihoods, health, food security and agriculture, nutrition and logistics, and management of evacuation camps.


The initiatives are expected to serve 247,000 people over the next six months.The humanitarian appeal is about 38 percent, or $12 million (P609 million) higher than the original appeal of $19.8 million (P1.005 billion).


Shelter needs“More than 70,000 people or 16,000 families are taking shelter in over 170 evacuation centers, while almost 160,000 people or 35,000 families are staying outside of evacuation centers, or in home-based settings,” Bidder said, citing government data as of Jan. 7. The bulk of the funding requirement worth $10.8 million (P548 million) is needed for camp management and shelter needs of the victims, he said.

The quakes destroyed or damaged at least 73,100 houses, according to the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

Bidder said $5.4 million (P274 million) would go to health, including reproductive health, $4.5 million (P228 million) to water, sanitation and hygiene, and $3.5 million (P178 million) to early recovery and livelihood, among other things.

From October to December last year, a series of over 6-magnitude tremors jolted central Mindanao that badly hit the provinces of Cotabato and Davao del Sur.

A 6.3-magnitude quake struck on Oct. 16, 6.6 on Oct. 29 and 6.5 on Oct. 31, all with epicenters in Cotabato, and 6.9 on Dec. 15 with epicenter in Davao del Sur, according to records of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.Worst hit by the quakes were the towns of Makilala and Tulunan and Kidapawan City in Cotabato and Matanao, Padada, Bansalan and Magsaysay towns in Davao del Sur.Thirty-six people were killed and over 770 others injured by collapsing structures, falling debris, cardiac arrest and other earthquake-related traumas, the Ocha said.

Gina Maramag, Ocha Philippines information officer, said the displaced people and vulnerable groups would remain at the center of the humanitarian response in close coordination with the government. INQ

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