30th January 2014
Patsy Zobel de Ayala, the Philippine Consul-General to the Monaco Principality reports on how donations from the Stelios Philanthropic Foundation and others are helping victims of the typhoon that hit the island of Leyte last November.
"Nearly three months after the typhoon, the situation of thousands of families remains desperate. The weather has continued to be terrible, with continual floods wiping out the " tent" villages that were put up by the relief organisations and making transport to the island impossible. The main relief shelters were delivered only to the largest towns, mainly because of the large homeless population there, but also because it is still very difficult to transport such a large amount of lumber and construction material.
"An added problem has been that the government wanted to make sure that no illegal lumber was being used, so all trucks had to present deeds of origin for the supplies transported. None of the small lumberyards near the island of Leyte could provide this. For these reasons, I originally contacted Habitat for Humanity thinking that they would be able to supply the shelters. One month after first contacting them, it replied their main operations had to be in Cebu and Samar, (where they were already based) and they could not provide us with the lumber for villages in Jaro and San Rafael, because they had no means to transport them.
"Consequently we have asked for their services in showing how to make a relief shelter and we moved to find our own provider. By sourcing our own lumber, roofing and materials from Manila we have been able to buy more material to make more shelters than we originally thought.
"We finally have a good system in place, and if the weather cooperates , we should be able to deliver the next 300 shelters by the beginning of February."
View previous stories
Progress from 6th January 2014
Progress from 10th December 2013
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