One year after Supertyphoon Haiyan (Philippine codename, Yolanda) devastated communities in central Philippines, the European Union (EU) has lauded the country for its quick turnaround from emergency response to rehabilitation in areas affected by the catastrophic storm.
“Marking the Typhoon Haiyan first anniversary, the EU acknowledges that despite the apocalyptic damage caused by this supertyphoon, the transition from emergency to rehabilitation was quick, thanks to strength and unbroken resilience shown by the people of the Philippines, and thanks to combined efforts by aid agencies, donors, the concerned governments, including civil protection authorities, NGOs and budgetary authorities,” the EU said in a statement.
\November 8 marked the first anniversary since Haiyan barreled through much of the country’s Visayan region, leaving a trail of death and destruction in its wake. As communities remembered all they had lost, the EU and its member states promised to keep supporting the rehabilitation efforts.
In its efforts to provide relief for the survivors of Yolanda, the EU has partnered with groups like the World Food Program, Unicef, Save the Children, International Federation of the Red Cross, Action Contre la Faim, CARE, Merlin, Plan International, Oxfam, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs and the International Organization for Migration.
The EU has donated 43.57 million euros (P2.5 billion) towards humanitarian assistance and early recovery interventions for the survivors of Haiyan. The total of the EU’s overall donation – including funds from its member states – amounts to 502.39 million euros (P28.5 billion).
“All these contributions have made a difference for around 1.2 million people,” the EU said.
In its statement, the EU also noted that the Philippines is at high risk for the ravages of climate change.
“[The] enormous damage caused by Typhoon Haiyan at the same time showed the high vulnerability of the Philippines to climate change,” the EU said.
As such, the union has made it among their strategic priorities to find ways to alleviate the effects of climate change, in order to provide long-term solutions, as well as to counter its adverse effects on global prosperity, security and equity.