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Philippines: SMART Survey Typhoon Yolanda - March 2014 - Summary Report

23 March 2014 - 11:01pm
Source: Government of the Philippines, World Food Programme, Action Contre la Faim, UN Children's Fund Country: Philippines preview

  1. Introduction On 8 November 2013 Typhoon Haiyan, locally known as Yolanda, hit the Philippines. In its wake, 14.1 million people have been affected and 4.1 million displaced.
    Infrastructure, water and sanitation, food security and medical services have been badly affected, as well as the shelter and security of domestic households.

The National Nutrition Cluster developed a Strategic Response Plan (SRP) to guide the implementation of nutrition services in 81 municipalities that were identified as priority areas in Regions VI, VII, and VIII by the Department of Health Emergency Management Staff (DOH-HEMS). To date, the Nutrition in Emergencies (NiE) activities have focused on the promotion and protection of Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF), the prevention of acute malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies, and treatment of acute malnutrition.
The Nutrition Assessment and Monitoring Technical Working Group, including UNICEF, WFP, WHO, ACF, the National Nutrition Council (NNC) and other non-government organizations, conducted a nutrition survey based on the SMART (Standardized Monitoring and Assessment of Relief

Philippines: World Water Day 2014

23 March 2014 - 4:11am
Source: ShelterBox Country: Philippines

World Water Day is held annually on 22 March as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. ShelterBox helps thousands of people each year who are left without access to clean, safe drinking water in the aftermath of disasters by providing water filters.

ShelterBox has been trialling a new water filter in the Philippines following Typhoon Haiyan, having received feedback from disaster-affected families that previous water filter models have been too time-consuming to use.

The beneficiary feedback led ShelterBox to work with a specialist water filtration expert to design a more effective solution. The Thirst Aid Station is the first iteration of this process.

‘The Thirst Aid Station purifies dirty water by filtering out the bacteria,’ said ShelterBox Operations Manager Alf Evans. ‘It also has an activated carbon filter meaning that it removes any strange taste, providing clean, safe and fresh drinking water.’

Safe water for a month

As well as the filter, the Thirst Aid Station is made up of an extremely tough 10 litre ArmourWeave bag that has enough capacity to supply a family of four with safe water for a month, complying with SPHERE humanitarian standards that ShelterBox follows.

‘It’s simple to use so disaster-affected families do not need to undergo extensive training for it, enabling them to use it quickly and leaving us confident that they will be provided with safe drinking water in the emergency stage of the disaster,’ added Alf.

It’s a simple operation. Dirty water is poured into the bag. Turn the valve at the end of the filter and clean water comes out. This quick procedure allows families to access clean water for the likes of cooking and washing and is more practical for them, especially if they are a big family with lots of children to look after. Previous water filters have been too difficult to use therefore families choose to boil water instead.

Need for clean water after Typhoon Haiyan

‘The traditional way to purify water in the Philippines is to boil it,’ explained Alf. ‘However after Typhoon Haiyan hit last November, some islands were left with no wood to burn and wells were contaminated when the tidal surge happened. Water towers were also pushed over in flat rural areas. Consequently there were pockets of need for clean water amongst various communities. We therefore sent enough water filters to help bring safe clean drinking water to 1,000 families.’

An international day to celebrate freshwater was recommended at the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). The United Nations General Assemby responded by designating 22 March 1993 at the first World Water Day.

Philippines: Philippine peace prospects dim after arrest of rebel couple

23 March 2014 - 3:27am
Source: Agence France-Presse Country: Philippines

03/23/2014 08:43 GMT

MANILA, March 23, 2014 (AFP) - Prospects of reviving peace talks with Philippine communist insurgents have faded following the arrest of a married couple who are senior rebel leaders, officials and analysts said Sunday.

The armed forces have hailed the arrest on Saturday of Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) chairman Benito Tiamzon and his wife, the party's secretary general Wilma Tiamzon, as a victory.

Military chief General Emmanuel Bautista said Benito Tiamzon heads both the party and its armed wing, the New People's Army (NPA).

He "directs the armed struggle all over the country, directs the (use of landmines), the killings, and the violence perpetrated by the NPA", Bautista said.

He told reporters the arrests would leave the 45-year-old rebel movement with a leadership vacuum, adding he hoped more guerrillas would realise the futility of their struggle.

But the detentions also prompted harsh accusations from both sides over the stalled peace process.

The Tiamzons were held in a raid in the central island of Cebu on three warrants for multiple murder and attempted murder, Bautista said.

He said five other people arrested with the couple were also believed to be insurgents since they were found in possession of firearms and explosives.

Luis Jalandoni, chairman of the insurgents' negotiating panel, condemned the "illegal arrest", saying both Tiamzons were covered by immunity guarantees.

Jalandoni, in a statement on the insurgents' website, called the arrests a "flagrant violation" of an immunity deal signed in 1995 when the latest peace talks began.

It "most seriously prejudices the peace negotiations", he added.

President Benigno Aquino had hoped to reach a peace agreement with the communists by the end of his term in 2016, but in April 2013 the government declared that talks had collapsed.

Government negotiators denied the arrests violated the immunity deal, and said Wilma Tiamzon would not have been covered in any case since she had jumped bail in 1989.

  • Possible retaliation -

The government panel said in a statement the rebels' position was "ridiculous" as it meant they could stage attacks and then claim immunity when arrested.

"It is even more outrageous considering that the peace negotiations have not moved for over a year now," the panel added.

Aquino's spokesman Edwin Lacierda also said any further talks should be "time bound" and not open-ended as in previous negotiations.

Despite the collapse of the talks in 2013, the Aquino government revealed that in January, it had been working with the Norwegian government, which had brokered previous negotiations, to reopen the stalled talks.

Rommel Banlaoi, chairman of the Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research, said the arrests would damage prospects for further talks since the rebels could demand the release of the Tiamzons as a precondition.

He said guerrillas might also mount retaliatory attacks.

The NPA's ranks have shrunk to about 4,000 guerrillas from more than 26,000 in the late 1980s.

But the rebels frequently ambush or raid small military and police units and also extort money from rural businesses, military officials say.

On March 10 the guerrillas staged one of their most daring attacks in years, raiding a police station and then ambushing a pursuing military convoy, leaving 10 soldiers and police dead.


© 1994-2014 Agence France-Presse

Philippines: NDRRMC Update Sitrep no. 03 Effects of Tropical Depression "CALOY"

22 March 2014 - 11:27pm
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines preview



  • On or about 9.30AM, March 19, 2014, flooding incidents occurred in the municipalities of Asuncion, Davao del Norte and Nabunturan, Compostela Valley due to continuous rains brought by the LPA causing the water level of Saug River (Asuncion) and Manat River (Nabunturan) to rise.

  • On 22 March 2014, One (1) motor banca was capsized and one (1) cargo boat bearing the name of Aqua Sea run aground in Surigao del Norte, all passengers and crews of the two (2) water vessels were rescued safely by the Surigao del Norte rescue volunteers (Active Local Emergency Response Team).

Philippines: Improving water and sanitation in 'Yolanda'-hit areas goes beyond fixing pipes and building toilets, communities must be involved, says Save the Children

22 March 2014 - 5:40am
Source: Save the Children Country: Philippines

In celebration of World Water Day, Save the Children, together with local government and humanitarian organizations, urges the public to act upon urgent water and sanitation issues in 'Yolanda'-hit areas. Despite achievements in providing safe water, interventions aimed at improving access to toilets continues to lag behind, the water, sanitation and hygiene or 'WASH' cluster warns. This is the coordinating body responsible for addressing water and sanitation in typhoon-affected communities.

"Simply tackling the water system issue is like dressing a wound without removing the bullet; water systems are only part of the equation, the other part is sanitation.", says Wayne Chang, Save the Children's Infrastructure Consultant for the agency's 'Typhoon Yolanda' response.

"Save the Children has done rapid assessments in over 100 barangays across seven municipalities in Leyte, and found that many communities are dependent on community-level water supply systems. In a place where more than 60 percent of the population do not have access to proper toilets, open defecation is common practice. As water pipelines are usually running downhill, they are very susceptible to contamination due to damaged pipe connections. ", he added.

Improved access to toilets, along with solid waste and water resource management, is important to protect water sources, eliminate open defecation, and prevent the spread of diarrheal diseases and to protect the dignity of families. Save the Children recognizes, however, that repairing damaged pipelines and building toilets alone may not fully address water and sanitation problems. Without proper consultation with and full involvement of the community, these projects may not succeed in the long-term.

Save the Children is working closely with the local government, the Department of Health and humanitarian organizations in restoring water supply systems to provide clean water; engaging schools in hygiene promotion sessions and training communities in reconstructing their toilets.

As part of the World Water Day celebration and to raise awareness of these issues, Save the Children took part in the 'Walk for Water' Torch Parade and 'Coastal Clean-Up' in Tacloban. Some 500 volunteers joined the coastal clean-up near Tacloban City Astrodome.

Lorencio Lagarto, 50, one of the volunteers explained why he joined the activity: "I believe that it is crucial that everybody—all residents from different parts of the province along with the concerned organizations working here—work together to ensure the fast recovery of our typhoon-hit province."

In Panay, Save the Children marked the day by handing over a restored water system to the municipality of Sara after a 3-month rehabilitation. The water facility will benefit 5600 families in 14 barangays in the municipality.


Save the Children is an international non-governmental organisation working in 120 countries. In the Philippines, Save the Children has been implementing programs for over 30 years in the areas of education, child protection, health and nutrition and child rights governance in both development and humanitarian settings. Save the Children was one of the first organizations to pre-deploy its team during the Typhoon Yolanda to immediately assess and respond to the needs of children and their families. Our 3-year strategy for Typhoon Yolanda plans to reach 1.1 M people including more than 800,000 children in our comprehensive relief, early recovery and rehabilitation projects.

In any emergency situation, Save the Children aims to respond to the critical needs of children and families inside and outside of evacuation centres, addressing concerns related to relief, child protection, education, health and nutrition including clean water supplies, sanitation, food security, and shelter.

For interviews with our spokesperson, contact April Sumaylo, Media Manager, Save the Children-Philippines thru: or +6309057487684

Philippines: NDRRMC Update Sitrep no. 02 Effects of Tropical Depression "CALOY"

22 March 2014 - 1:11am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines preview



On or about 9.30AM, March 19, 2014, flooding incidents occurred in the municipalities of Asuncion, Davao del Norte and Nabunturan, Compostela Valley due to continuous rains brought by the LPA causing the water level of Saug River (Asuncion) and Manat River (Nabunturan) to rise.

Philippines: NDRRMC Update Sitrep no. 01 Effects of Tropical Depression "CALOY"

22 March 2014 - 1:09am
Source: Government of the Philippines Country: Philippines preview



On or about 9.30AM, March 19, 2014, flooding incidents occurred in the municipalities of Asuncion, Davao del Norte and Nabunturan, Compostela Valley due to continuous rains brought by the LPA causing the water level of Saug River (Asuncion) and Manat River (Nabunturan) to rise.