Exactly a year ago, on November 8, the Super Typhoon Yolanda (international code: Haiyan), one of the most powerful storms ever recorded to hit land, made several landfalls in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines. Haiyan left more than 7,350 people dead or missing as winds of 315 kilometers an hour and tsunami-like storm surges devastated poor farming and fishing communities: overall, the disaster has affected an estimated 16 million people and left 4 million displaced. It cost communities billions of pesos worth of damage, and international humanitarian groups say it may take up to 5 years more for these communities to be really recover. The typhoon was an extreme weather event consistent with man-made climate change.
According to the World Health Organization, 600 health facilities in Yolanda-affected areas “sustained fairly significant damage,” but repair in two-thirds of these has yet to begin. The filipino health department said that most of the damaged facilities are barangay health stations, followed by rural health units, and hospitals.
Now that the relief phase, that is about saving lives, has finished, the rehabilitation has started: we need to help Filipino people to restore their dignity by being involved in their own recovery. Kito Onlus, with its Health Center Unit, has helped the municipality of San Fernando, La Union: the Kito-Health operates as a first aid center, and at the moment health, nutrition and hygiene trainings are conducted there. We are supporting also the community of San Francisco, Camotes Islands, with a school’s rehabilitation project and the “Cash for Work” formula, thanks to which it has been possible to employ local people (25 families) in the “environmental rehabilitation” after the damages caused by the typhoon.
A lot of goals has been achieved thanks to your help, but a lot more still have to be done… support Kito Onlus in helping the Filipino people to fully recover by the Typhoon Haiyan and be prepared to face other natural disasters!