The European Union is allocating €570,000 (P34 million) in humanitarian funding to deliver emergency relief assistance to families affected by Tropical Storm Vinta, which wreaked havoc across large parts of southern Philippines just before Christmas. The funds will be used to address the immediate needs of those who have been most affected in the heavily hit areas.
According to a press release, the EU-funded assistance will focus on responding to immediate needs of the most vulnerable families, including the provision of emergency shelter and essential household items, access to clean water and hygiene promotion. Humanitarian experts from the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) have also been deployed in some of the most affected localities to assess the situation and identify the most pressing needs.
Over 151,700 families were affected in MIMAROPA, ARMM, CARAGA, and Regions VII, IX, X, XI, and XII, according to the latest update of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) on Thursday. 164 persons were killed, and 176 more are missing. Over 2,600 houses were damaged, while some other houses were washed out due to storm surges.
“This EU contribution underlines our commitment to the people of the Philippines, many of whom have suffered great losses as a result of Tropical Storm Vinta and are in dire need of immediate assistance. My thoughts are with the victims and all affected by the catastrophe,” said Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management. “The funding will enable our humanitarian partners to deliver life-saving aid to those most in need, to ensure that they have the capacities to face the grave hardships.”
According to the European Commission, the EU is among the leading donors of humanitarian aid in the world, reaching over 120 million people every year. Aid is channeled impartially to affected populations – regardless of race, ethnic group, religion, gender, age, nationality, or political affiliation – through international nongovernmental organizations, the United Nations, and the Red Cross.