Super Typhoon Haiyan will go down in history as one of the most powerful storms in recorded history. It resulted in more than 6,155 deaths with 1,800 people unaccounted for. All told, it effected 16 million people and damage is estimated to be in the billions.
Haiyan (known as Yolanda locally) left hundreds of thousands of people without permanent shelter. Livelihoods such as fishing and farming and small businesses will need to be rebuilt.
We know from disasters, such as Hurricane Sandy and Katrina, the earthquake in Haiti, and the Indian Ocean Tsunami, that to fully recover takes many years. That’s why CDP is uniquely focused on highlighting the impact of long-term disaster recovery.
We launched the CDP Typhoon Haiyan Recovery Fund just days following the November 2013 disaster to help with these long-term needs. Donors committed more than $300,000 to long-term recovery through the fund. In July 2014, we awarded grants to four organizations, all focused on maternal health for women and their newborns. Grantees include:
Direct Relief which will work to ensure safe newborn deliveries in the Philippines by equipping midwives with essential supplies to ensure safe births among Typhoon-affected populations. Midwife kits will be distributed to 100 trained and skilled midwives working in local health centers throughout remote regions in the Philippines; consumable products in midwife kits will be restocked; and Direct Relief will work with the Integrate Midwives Association of the Philippines to identify additional midwives in need of resources.
Mercy in Action will rebuild a birthing center in Tanauan that was devastated by the typhoon. The organization’s objectives for this project are four-fold: rebuild and bring back to the community a trusted birth center, run by licensed Filipina midwives; maintain lower than the national average mother and infant mortality rates in the Typhoon-affected region; provide free, clean, safe, and attended birthing services to pregnant women; and, provide free prenatal care of high-risk populations without access to maternal health care. Once rebuilt, Mercy in Action anticipates that this clinic will provide prenatal care to about 1,500 women and support 250-300 births at the clinic annually. Based on previous history, the clinic will see mortality rates that are eight times lower than the national average.
Save the Children will use its CDP Typhoon Haiyan funds to improve access to clean birthing supplies and materials in typhoon-affected communities and communities at risk of such disasters. The organization will source and distribute Birthing Essentials and Care of Newborns (BEACON) boxes to prevent excess maternal and infant morbidity and mortality. Save the Children will partner with local health officials, who will take care of each BEACON box, and who will communicate back to Save the Children should supplies need to be replenished.
The Women’s Refugee Commission (WRC) will work with women living in Tanauan Leyte to improve their health and resilience. Through this project, designed to build the capacity of local women’s groups to support response and prevention in Typhoon-affected Philippines, the Women’s Refugee Commission It seeks to fulfill these four objectives: improve opportunities to organize women for skill and knowledge building related to reproductive health, livelihoods and protection, through safe spaces; conduct workshops with women within DAMPA’s federation (Damayan ng Marlitand Pilipinoong Api, Inc. – meaning solidarity of Poor Oppressed Filipinos), to identify risks and vulnerabilities during disasters, as well as local solutions to reduce identified risks; implement community developed action plans to improve access to basic services for women, including reproductive health and protection; and strengthen gender-sensitive policies and programs that deliver health and basic services to women most in need.