A year after one of the world’s biggest typhoons devastated the Philippines more than 1.3 million people remain living in tents or makeshift shelter as the recovery effort remains chronically underfunded.
The typhoon, which hit the Philippines on the morning of 8 November 2013, killed 6,300 people and displaced more than 4 million people from their homes.
“Many families are living in miserable conditions even 12 months after the typhoon hit and with a $300 million shortfall in funding the recovery effort their future looks bleak,” says Habitat for Humanity Australia CEO, Martin Thomas.
“The conditions in the temporary shelters have to be seen to be believed, there is little room for families in the shelters and in some cases no access to water and electricity.”
Mr Thomas said it was significant Australian funded projects had led to the very first permanent housing to be completed in the devastated region.
Many organisations are contributing rebuilding efforts, however, due to the extent of the devastation, finding new land that is both safe and available for construction, as well as gaining access to building materials and resources, poses a significant challenge.
Individuals and organisations – including Australian construction and building company Boral Limited – donated funds to assist Habitat for Humanity’s rebuilding efforts. Typhoon affected families will start moving into the new homes toward the end of the month.
Despite the challenges, communities displaced by Typhoon Haiyan are resilient and hopeful as Habitat for Humanity Philippines progresses with construction of more than 900 permanent homes across 10 sites.
“The road to recovery will be long and there are many communities still in great need, but we are committed to supporting affected families in the long term,” Mr Thomas said.
“Australians have been very generous and have allowed us to build some of the first permanent houses. This has provided hope for those affected by the disaster.”
Habitat for Humanity, one of the world’s biggest not-for-profit providers of housing for low income families, plans to build 30,000 homes for families affected by Typhoon Haiyan and has distributed nearly 28,000 shelter repair kits, providing families with tools and materials to repair their homes.
Donate to the Typhoon Haiyan Appeal here or phone 1800 88 55 99.