IFRC


Water recedes, but needs are still high after Philippine floods

Published: 3 September 2013 12:00 CET

By Madeline Wilson, IFRC

Shane, 21, clings to her mobile phone like a lifeline to the world. She is one of the more than 1,375 people (275 families) who fled floodwaters to seek shelter at Aplaya Elementary School in Santa Rosa City, Laguna Province. Across Luzon Island, more than 800,000 people were displaced at the peak of the flooding, which began on 18 August after Tropical Storm Trami intensified heavy monsoon rains on the island of Luzon, affecting over 2.9 million people across Metro Manila and surrounding provinces.

Shane and her family are now sharing a classroom with 14 other families and describes what it is like in the evacuation centre.

“It’s sad. It’s difficult to stay here because it’s so overcrowded. It’s difficult sleeping at night. It’s very noisy and hard to sleep on the concrete floors. My family does not have a source of income while we are in the evacuation centre. Before the floods, I was working as a teacher’s aide. Now, I keep busy by helping to maintain the cleanliness of the room and by helping to organize families ahead of relief distributions.”

Shane is the team leader for the families staying in the classroom and helps to coordinate the aid they receive. The Philippine Red Cross is providing hot meals, drinking water and is running health and hygiene promotion activities in the centre.

The Red Cross will continue to provide support for affected families over the coming weeks and months with an appeal launched both domestically by the Philippine Red Cross and internationally through the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) to support 75,000 people with food and emergency supplies, shelter and cash based solutions, water and sanitation assistance, and health and hygiene education.

“I cannot say when we might be able to go home. Last time we spent almost two months in the evacuation centre,” says Shane, referring to the floods that hit several provinces across Luzon in 2012.

Although floodwaters have receded in most parts of Metro Manila, some floodwaters remain across Laguna, with over 6,600 people still sheltering in evacuation centres.




Appeal information

Emergency appeal to support 15,000 families affected by floods in Philippines

The IFRC has launched a 1.68 million Swiss franc (1.8 million US dollars, 1.36 million euros) ...

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