CARE is mobilising emergency relief supplies as Typhoon Hagupit makes landfall in the central Philippines.
The typhoon, which first made landfall late Saturday evening, local time, has brought with it intense rain and wind gusts of more than 200 kilometres per hour, lashing many communities that felt the brunt of last year’s Super Typhoon Haiyan.
Jacqui Symonds from CARE Australia’s Humanitarian and Emergency Response team, is in the capital Manila and says that CARE is currently meeting with partners and local emergency authorities to ensure emergency supplies and relief is in place to support families hit by Hagupit.
“We are working alongside Philippines’ authorities to try and get accurate reports of the damage from Hagupit. We will soon deploy response teams to affected areas to carry out damage assessments and tomobilise relief supplies. CARE has been working throughout Leyte and Samar since Haiyan hit, and willcontinue to do so in the wake of Hagupit.”
Almost 700,000 people were evacuated before Typhoon Hagupit, known in the Philippines as Ruby, made landfall. The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction has said the evacuation is one of the largest peacetime evacuations ever undertaken.
“It’s just awful, there were a lot of people still living in patchwork houses on the coastline made from debris from the storm a year ago,” said Ms Symonds. “They needed to be evacuated to safer areas.”
Ms Symonds said many of the communities that were being hit by Typhoon Hagupit were re-living the fear and trauma of last year’s Super Typhoon Haiyan, which killed more than 6,000 people and left over four million homeless.
“This is mother nature at its most cruel. Just one year after suffering through one of the most ferocious storms ever recorded, families in the central Philippines are now re-living their nightmare.”
CARE has worked in the Philippines since 1949, providing emergency relief when disaster strikes and helping communities prepare for disasters. CARE’s past responses in the Philippines have included Typhoon Ketsana (2009), Typhoon Bopha (2012) and Super Typhoon Haiyan (2013). Over the past 12 months since Haiyan, CARE and its partners in the Philippines have reached more than 318,000 people with life-saving food, shelter support and financial assistance to rebuild their incomes.