DSWD Secretary Judy Taguiwalo.
DSWD Secretary Judy Taguiwalo.

TACLOBAN CITY, Sept. 25 (PNA) — The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has assured the release of remaining funds intended for typhoon Yolanda survivors, giving priority to those who did not receive the shelter aid.

DSWD Secretary Judy Taguiwalo said there is an ongoing review of budget utilization for the victims of the 2013 monster typhoon. Teams have been deployed in Eastern Visayas and Western Visayas earlier to evaluate the delivery of post-disaster assistance.

“We are putting together all complaints of victims who were short changed of assistance or did not receive any assistance. As long as they can provide documentation and proof, we will try to find ways to give them the assistance that they deserve. That is one area that I would like to pursue,” Taguiwalo told reporters during late Saturday’s press briefing here.

The official said there are still millions of unutilized funds from donations for Yolanda survivors that they can tap for the distribution of emergency shelter assistance (ESA).

“We will see how much money the DSWD still has from Yolanda donations. This money should go to the victims. This is justice even though this is belatedly. If our money is not enough, we will find ways of finding additional money,” Taguiwalo added.

In a report last year, the DSWD has received a total of PHP1.16 billion cash donations for super typhoon Yolanda. Tens of millions of pesos are still unspent, according to Taguiwalo.

Meanwhile, the DSWD Chief said they will modify delivery of shelter assistance in the aftermath of future disasters.

“The future plan is to provide across the board assistance so people can start rebuilding righ away. The bureaucratic requirements such as documentation and validation delayed the assistance. Let us simplify the assistance because it is emergency,” Taguiwalo said.

Under the existing policy, DSWD provides ESA funds to local government units, which are tasked to distribute the shelter aid to hardly-hit families.

Those with totally damaged houses got PHP30,000 while those with partially damaged houses got PHP10,000. (PNA)