The Philippines are made up of around 7000 islands – which means that water is never far away. But finding fresh water for drinking and domestic use was a real struggle for many poor communities even before Typhoon Haiyan in 2013.
As Pope Francis makes his historic wisit to the Philippines, Caritas Philippines is asking for help in addressing the issue of climate change. The pope will meet families who survived natural disasters like Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda).
Filipinos are breathing a sigh of relief after Typhoon Hagupit, known locally as Ruby, passed over their islands without causing major damage. Caritas has been giving out food and other emergency supplies.
Coming back to the school, ten months on, is an emotional experience. The transformation is remarkable. The tents have gone, and children are playing on the land, which is, I now realise, a basketball court.
While it doesn’t quite match the heroic images of aid work and emergency relief that is so often seen in the media, clearing debris is critical to the Caritas response in areas affected by Typhoon Haiyan.