"We can safely survive and overcome disasters and calamities if we work together and coordinate our efforts. Preventing loss of human life and ensuring the safety of the most vulnerable members of our communities are at the top of our priorities during this season of natural calamities. We want our communities to stand strong and united against calamities and for all of us to work together."
This was the statement of Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy M. Taguiwalo as the Department continues to strengthen its relief operations in areas affected by Typhoon 'Karen' in Regions I, II, III, IV-A, V and CAR.
At present, DSWD- Field Offices (FOs) maintain their coordination with affected local government units (LGUs) and the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) for distribution of relief packs and augmentation support.
A total of ?1,487,375 worth of relief assistance from the combined resources of DSWD and LGUs has been provided to the affected families, especially those coming from Regions II and V.
Although there are no reported flooding incidents affecting residential areas in the National Capital Region (NCR), disaster team members of the DSWD-FO NCR, LGUs and the Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA) conducted ocular monitoring in the cities of Quezon, Mandaluyong, Manila, and San Juan.
A rapid assessment was also conducted by the Social Welfare and Development (SWAD) of Cavite to check on the status of four low-lying areas, namely Cavite City, Rosario, Noveleta, and Kawit.
In Quezon Province, additional 5,000 family food packs will be delivered for distribution to families affected by the typhoon.
To date, a total 17,052 families or 75,461 persons from 489 barangays in Regions I, II, III, CALABARZON, V, and CAR have been affected. Of the affected persons, 1,379 were strandees at ports in Albay, Catanduanes, Camarines Sur, Masbate, and Sorsogon.
Some 5,077 families or 22,013 persons are taking shelter in 254 evacuation centers set up by LGUs.
Likewise, 943 houses were damaged in Regions I, II, V, and CAR; of which, 905 were partially damaged and 38 were totally damaged.
Sec. Taguiwalo has already directed all concerned field offices to maintain their close coordination with LGUs since Typhoon 'Lawin' is fast approaching the country.
"The Department continues to help LGUs in managing evacuation centers and providing augmentation support through delivery of additional food packs and other immediate needs of affected residents. We urge everyone to remain vigilant and please cooperate with their LGUs. As for the LGUS, we also ask our officials to maintain constant communication with our Field Offices and even with the Central Office if necessary so we can all stay ahead of the needs of our people and ensure that we are able to respond to them as soon as possible during emergencies," she said.
Source: Philippine Information Agency