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 the Philippines
Heavy Rain Damage the Philippines – KnK’s Relief Activities (2012/8/28)
The rainy season has started in the Philippines.  Continuous heavy rains and torrential monsoons have caused massive floods in Metropolitan Manila and other areas and affected more than 2.4 million people.

KnK’s Relief Activities
On August 7th, while the heavy rains had still yet to stop, the members of KnK Philippines started to use their network on their cell phones to gather information on disaster damage.  After visiting Bagong Silang, Asia’s largest poor community, on the 8th and Payatas which has the notorious Smoky Mountain dump site, on the 9th, KnK decided to provide emergency relief to the most badly damaged area of Bagong Silang. 
philippines photo People Standing in Lines for Relief Supplies

Public schools in Bagong Silang were used as evacuation centers for over a week and had their classes closed.  KnK received lists of over 1,000 affected families from local governments and started to visit them for the information on their damage.  On August 23rd and 24th, rice, canned, and other types of food was provided to approximately 300 families and school supplies, such as notebooks, pens, and bags, to about 600 children, depending on the degrees of the damage they received. 

philippines photo philippines photo

Bagong Silang was devastated by the large-scale typhoon Ketsana (or Ondoy in the Philippines) in September 2009.  Visited by another large natural disaster, children in this area are experiencing strong anxiety and fear.  After appropriate training by mental health experts, staff members and volunteer workers are going to treat about 600 affected children with psychosocial care, such as self-expression activities through games and art.

philippines photo Ten houses on the river were all washed away in the flood, leaving only one.

When Typhoon Ondoy hit the Luzon Island in 2009, the water level in the river rose with the flood and strong winds, eventually leading to extensive damages.  However, people are still living on the land at high risk without being given a safer settlement for living*.  After Ondoy, KnK provided community residents with disaster prevention training with assistance from UBS Securities Japan Ltd.  As a result, residents paid good attention to the water level in the river during the excessive precipitation in August and were able to promptly evacuate when the alarm was set off by the government.  Therefore, no human damage has been reported from Bagong Silang.  However, the high water (as high as an adult male) washed away residents’ electric appliances, school supplies, food, and outer walls of houses.  Many people even lost their houses.  In addition, a lot of people also lost their agricultural crops, such as papayas and bananas, which they were carefully growing after Ondoy as their only income sources and as food.  Living in poverty, these people have no stable income or savings.

philippines photo
Before disaster (above); after disaster (right)
The agricultural crops that people were carefully grown as their only income source were washed away.

philippines photo philippines photoDevastated Building (left) / Remains of a House (right)

For Children in the Philippines

phillipines photo19-year-old woman (right) selling snacks to support her family and still participating in volunteer activities “My father could not work for over a month due to heavy rains and floods.  I was supporting my family by selling snacks, and I am very happy with the assistance from KnK.  I am trying to eat as little food as possible at a time so it will last longer,” said a 19-year-old woman, who was affected again after Ondoy and is still working as a volunteer at KnK for support operations.  She is engaged in volunteer activities with occasional smiles, but she says she often feels unsafe after the August flood.  She still wants to participate in volunteer activities because she was greatly helped by KnK after Ondoy and because she remembers seeing children starting to smile again with the assistance from KnK after the disaster.  On the day of the interview, she had to line the mud in the house with stones before coming to work.  She will, however, participate in a new project for children in September.

Your support is needed now to help the flood survivors in the Philippines.


*According to the information from a concerned party, some residents in Bagong Silang were given new settlements after Ondoy.  Residents who had lived there for less than twenty years, however, were not given new land and were affected more seriously during the August rainfalls. 

Nonprofit Organization Kokkyo naki Kodomotachi (KnK)
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