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Devastating floods are currently hitting the Philippines

Emergency
Philippines

At least 1.4 million people have been affected and more than 411,000 have been forced to flee due to massive flooding in several regions of Mindanao Island, in the south of the Philippines.

A woman has to cross flooded fields to reach her house with water jerry cans and hygiene kits supplied by HI as part of its emergency response. 500 households affected by the floods have already received support from HI in the province of Davao del Norte

A woman has to cross flooded fields to reach her house with water jerry cans and hygiene kits supplied by HI as part of its emergency response. 500 households affected by the floods have already received support from HI in the province of Davao del Norte | © Maria Clarissa Manalastas / HI

Since 29 January, the island of Mindanao in the south of the Philippines has been hit by heavy rainfall, causing flooding and landslides. While the situation is likely to worsen in the coming days, the needs of the local population continue to grow. At least 84 deaths have been reported, 51 people are still missing and at least 33 people have been injured.

A worrying humanitarian situation

The humanitarian situation on the ground is particularly worrying. Sanitation facilities have been affected - septic tanks flooded, water sources contaminated and damaged - limiting the availability of drinking water. In addition, the high number of displaced people in evacuation centers is limiting access to water and sanitation facilities. The prolongation of these conditions could lead to the spread of water-borne diseases. In these regions, which are largely farmland, the damage to rice crops is also considerable/important.

"I don't know how we're going to get through this".

Humanity & Inclusion (HI) was able to interview Charlyn in front of her tarpaulin shelter in the municipality of Carmen, Davao del Norte. Charlyn has three children, including a baby, and her husband is a farmer. Their house was badly damaged and all their possessions were washed away:

"I have no idea how we're going to get through this. All the fields have been devastated. We currently have no source of income and we still don't know how to recover everything that was destroyed by the floods."

Caption: Charlyn and her baby in front of their flooded shelter in the town of Carmen, Davao del Norte ©Maria Clarissa Manalastas / HI 2023

Their current living conditions are extremely precarious and for the time being Charlyn is taking care of her family thanks to humanitarian aid:

"We've already received food. Thanks to HI, we now have blankets and washing facilities, which is really important, especially for my children", explains Charlyn.

600 emergency kits distributed by HI Philippines

HI Philippines is currently on the ground providing assistance to the communities affected by the floods. Nearly 600 emergency kits have already been distributed. They contain everything needed for sleeping (blanket, mat, sun lamp, mosquito net, tarpaulin) and hygiene (washing powder, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, blanket, etc.). Non-food household items such as plates, pans and cups were also distributed.

"As the situation is likely to deteriorate in the coming days, we are particularly concerned about the needs of the communities most at risk, such as people with disabilities. We will do our best to respond to the needs of the affected communities, especially those most at risk", said Melanie Ruiz, HI Philippines Country Manager.

HI is helping people affected by the floods in the Philippines as part of the SUPREME project. This is being carried out with the support of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Civil Protection and European Humanitarian Aid Operations.

Date published: 06/03/24

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