Philippines: Super Typhoon Rai (Odette) – Situation Report #7 (as of March 25, 2022) – Philippines

This report is produced by OCHA Philippines in collaboration with humanitarian partners. It covers the period from March 11 to March 21, 2022.

HIGHLIGHTS

• The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reports that 5,102 families (or 21,051 individuals) have been displaced in Regions VI, VII, VIII, X, MIMAROPA and Caraga.

• Three months after Typhoon Rai/Odette, a high-level mission was conducted to CERF sites in the Caraga region (March 9-11) and Southern Leyte (March 14-16) to take stock of initial progress and remaining to make gaps. RC/HC Gustavo Gonzalez was joined by key CERF supporters, ambassadors of Norway, UK and Canada, and heads of agencies from UNICEF, WFP, IOM, UNFPA and OCHA.

• Inclusive consultation and clear communication is required with communities affected by the No Build Zones (NBZ) policy.

• To date, the Logistics Cluster has provided 550 trucks to transport various supplies to the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and DSWD. The pace of cargo shipments has slowed but is expected to pick up again to carry family food packs and specialized national government nutritious foods.

• More focused alignment between UN agencies and humanitarian actors is needed to ensure that the multiple vulnerabilities faced by women and youth are addressed through coordinated and collective action, particularly in the context of health interventions.

• Healthcare workers are overwhelmed by competing priorities such as providing routine and essential care, immunizations and containing the spread of COVID-19.

• Limited mobile and internet signal due to damaged infrastructure continues to impede timely communication and reporting.

• Funding remains a major obstacle as communities slowly move towards early recovery.

• Price hikes due to the war in Ukraine are driving up fuel and cement prices and further delaying recovery efforts in all areas affected by Typhoon Rai.

• The results of the post-disaster needs assessment in all 6 regions and the corresponding recovery plans have yet to be submitted to the NDRRMC. The submission and approval of the recovery plan will free up government resources for full recovery and rehabilitation of Rai-affected regions and communities.

SITUATION OVERVIEW

On March 25, 2022, 100 days have passed since Typhoon Rai/Odette swept through 11 of the country’s 17 regions. More than 21,000 people remain displaced after Typhoon Rai landed on December 16, 2022, and to date over 2.1 million homes have been damaged, with 425,000 completely destroyed and 1,702,428 partially damaged, according to the latest government reports.

On March 15, 2022, the Caraga Regional Disaster Response Committee issued the deactivation of the regional coordination mechanism for Typhoon Rai response operations. The guidance calls for the closure of evacuation centers; reducing the number of requests for increases from local government, especially food parcels; and deactivation of regional reaction clusters. Government member agencies, cluster leaders and affected agencies continue to monitor and respond to affected families where necessary, with HCT partners reinforcing the response of local government units.

The HCT held an in-person meeting on March 17-23 to discuss the protection concerns of the response to Typhoon Rai and the principled humanitarian response in the context of the May 2022 national and local elections. The HCT endorsed the proposed Protection Cluster and Shelter Cluster rollout strategy, noting that humanitarian partners should engage in constructive dialogue with authorities and share best practices that already exist at the local level.

The local election campaign begins today. The election campaign may impact ongoing disaster relief and recovery efforts ahead of the May 9 election as the Electoral Commission has imposed a ban on the release, disbursement or expenditure of public funds. In practice, state aid organizations would have to apply to the electoral commission for an exception to the voting ban in order to be able to continue providing aid.

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