A deadly Philippines typhoon that crossed the country on 14-15 September has caused extensive damage and disruption.
Typhoon Mangkhut (locally named Ompong) affected more that 270,000 people in 30 provinces as the storm damaged houses, crops and livelihoods.
Roads and bridges are blocked by landslides and the electricity supply is down. 138,000 people were forced into 1,250 evacuation centres and 16,191 people are staying with relatives or friends.
Urgent need for food after Typhoon Mangkhut
Caritas assessment teams say that there is an urgent need for food in coastal and interior areas.
“There are a lot of things we need right now, particularly food, canned goods, clothes, blankets. We are again knocking on your door, asking for you generosity,” says Fr. Peter Rambac, parish priest in Roxas in Isabela.
In his town of Roxas, 90 percent of vegetable crop has been damaged and 15 percent of rice harvested.
Emerita, 31, is a farmer from Caoayan, Ilocos Sur. Before the typhoon, she says they were expecting to harvest six sacks of rice from less than a hectare land. This time, she’s not sure if they can get even one sack of rice.
“The saddest part is that the land is not ours. Everytime we harvest, we need to give one sack to our land owner as payment for the use of the land. What are we going to give them now?” she said. She and her husband will need to earn extra to sustain the family over the coming months. “We appeal for your mercy. Help us restore our livelihoods,” she said.
Fr. Edwin Gariguez, Executive Secretary of NASSA/Caritas Philippines, says that relief efforts must empower communities to harness resilience and sustain long-term recovery. Caritas Philippines has already allotted an estimate of PhP 1,000,000 (18456 USD) for the emergency operation to be followed by an international appeal. Caritas staff have already handed out food packs to affected families.
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