WFP is working with the Philippines government and the humanitarian community on a massive relief operation to respond to the needs of millions of people affected by Typhoon Haiyan. The typhoon, one of the most powerful storms on record, ripped through the central Philippines on 9 November, leaving behind it a path of death and destruction.
Food is a crucial part of the relief effort in the Philippines, especially in the worst-hit areas. At the moment, WFP is providing High Energy Biscuits – a vital source of energy for disaster victims, especially children. We are also providing rice, which is distributed either by the Philippines government, as part of family food packs, or directly to affected communities.
WFP plans to provide food assistance to 2.5 million affected people over the next six months. In some typhoon-affected areas, WFP will help communities begin their recovery with programmes that provide food or cash as they rebuild homes and livelihoods.
WFP is also providing logistics and telecommunications support to relief efforts. WFP logistics hubs have been established in the cities of Cebu and Tacloban, with additional hubs now established and operational in Roxas, Ormoc and Guiuan . Meanwhile, WFP IT experts are providing internet and telephone connectivity to the entire humanitarian community.
Just over a week after the typhoon, WFP’s Executive Director Ertharin Cousin spent three days in the Philippines, talking to the government and seeing emergency operations at first hand. Noting the resilience of the Philippine people and the central role they themselves were playing in the relief effort, she said : “They’re not asking for a hand-out. What they’re asking for is a hand-up to rebuild their lives”.
The public response to WFP’s appeal has been generous and millions of dollars have been received in private donations. If you would like to donate, please go to: wfp.org/typhoon. For every $100 donated, WFP can provide 1,000 packs of biscuits.