Australia gives additional P126-million for 'Pablo' victims
The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines - Australia will provide an additional P126 million (A$3 million) in response to a revised appeal from the Philippine government and the United Nations to raise more aid for victims of Typhoon Pablo.
This additional assistance will bring Australia's total contribution of support for people affected by typhoon Pablo to P432 million (A$10.3 million), the Australian Embassy in the Philippies said in a release on Monday.
Six weeks after Pablo’s widespread destruction in Mindanao, shelter and livelihoods remain critical needs with over 840,000 people still displaced, including 700,000 people whose livelihoods were destroyed by the typhoon.
“The scale of destruction caused by typhoon Pablo is staggering, and I witnessed this when I recently visited Compostela Valley. My heart went out to the families who continue to suffer,” Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Bill Tweddell said.
“We commend the Philippine government for its effective and well-coordinated efforts to address this crisis. Australia stands ready to help Filipino families affected by this disaster get back on their feet - and I know they can,” he added.
The additional funding will provide emergency shelters including improvements of existing shelter facilities in the worst-hit areas. Emergency cash-for-work programs will be funded for debris clearing and will provide critically needed income to affected workers across the affected areas.
Following Pablo, Australia immediately responded by providing P307 million (A$7.3 million) for food, safe drinking water, health and hygiene kits, cash-for-work program, temporary shelters to thousands of families including people with disabilities, and psycho-social support to help protect and counsel traumatised children.
To prepare for further humanitarian responses in the Philippines, Australia will also provide a further P84 million (A$2 million) to replenish pre-positioned stocks used in the Philippine government’s initial response to typhoon Pablo.
Australia places a very high priority on responding to natural disasters in its aid program to the Philippines, the embassy said.
“The Australian government understands that humanitarian assistance is not enough. Australia’s aid program also targets P462 million of its annual aid program budget of P5.5 billion on reducing disaster risk and enhancing disaster preparedness across the country,” Ambassador Tweddell said.