QUEZON CITY, July 10 — “The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) continues to help survivors of Typhoon Yolanda in Eastern Visayas.”
This was the clarification made by DSWD Assistant Secretary Vilma B. Cabrera in response to the claims of militant groups who said that no services has been provided to the survivors.
Asec. Cabrera met with Congresswoman Lucy Ilagan who led GABRIELA, People Surge, and KADAMAY in their demonstration at the DSWD grounds on Tuesday.
She further explained that to date, the Department still goes on providing various forms of assistance, other than food support, to the victims.
She added that DSWD has been distributing food packs with 25-kilogram rice packs every 15 days as needed, especially to families still residing in evacuation centers. The 25-kilogram rice is a transition from the 3 and 6-kilogram rice packs that were distributed during the first weeks after ‘Yolanda’.
As of June 24, the Department has provided a total of 4,524,838 food packs in Eastern Visayas.
Moreover, a total of 11,486 families with damaged houses in the region were provided with shelter kits by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) in close coordination with DSWD. These kits are composed of GI Sheets, U nails, common wire nails, hammer and hand saws which were distributed in partnership with concerned local government units.
The Department also implemented Cash-for-Work activities pouring in P14.6 million to pay some 30,289 individuals who rendered community work.
DSWD also began implementing the Cash-for-Assets Rebuilding Program aimed at helping rebuild the sources of livelihood of survivors like mangroves, benefiting 146,951individuals.
As part of the Department’s rehabilitation efforts, DSWD is implementing the Core Shelter Assistance Program (CSAP) to construct 6,000 units of core shelters amounting to P420 million. The construction of such shelters is in partnership with the Habitat for Humanity and close coordination with the National Housing Authority (NHA).
The Department also provided pedicabs to 113 beneficiaries, and motorized bancas to 226 families. Livelihood assistance is also being provided by the Department to more than 5,300 beneficiaries.
In response to the needs of the child-survivors, the Department continues the implementation of the Supplementary Feeding Program to benefit 13,334 children.
Also, DSWD provided toys to the children through the “Wish Upon a Star” project, as well as distributed materials for the conduct of play and art therapies.
Recently, the Department also launched the Kapit-bisig Laban sa Kahirapan Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services – National Community-Driven Development Program (KALAHI CIDSS-NCDDP) to address the concerns of the ‘Yolanda’ areas. Under KALAHI CIDSS-NCDDP, classrooms and day care centers will be constructed in typhoon-hit municipalities.
Asec. Cabrera also explained to the group that it is the Resettlement Cluster, headed by the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC) and NHA, that is in-charge of the provision of permanent shelters.
She also countered the claims of the rallyists that DSWD only arrived in Tacloban City eight days after ‘Yolanda’. In fact, Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman arrived in the city on November 9, the day after the typhoon, to spearhead the relief operations.
She further committed to inform concerned agencies regarding the issues on shelter and health raised by the rallyists.
Asec. Cabrera also reiterated DSWD’s openness to conduct dialogues with concerned sectors and to present what the Department has done so far.
“It is not true that DSWD has not done its part in the relief operations. We welcome inquiries and we are prepared to show proof of what has been done so far,” Asec. Cabrera said.(DSWD)