MANILA (DWDD) – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) continues to carry out operations to assist the local government of Ormoc City, Leyte in its efforts to secure the safety of residents and minimize their fear of possible aftershocks. The goal of the LGU is to convince residents to leave their communities which are in within the area of the July 6 earthquake fault line.
Last week, around 180 affected families from high ground Barangay Ga-as were transferred to the gymnasium of Barangay Dolores to protect from possible strong aftershocks and possible landslides.
Currently, the number of affected families is pegged at 4,127 or 16,040 persons. From the 27 affected barangays, 19 evacuations centers are open to serve some 1,661 families or 6,024 persons, while the rest are staying with their relatives or friends.
The Department has also provided P293,700 financial assistance to cover the hospital bills and other expenses of the 39 injured individuals.
Meanwhile, several teams from Kapit-Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive Integrated Delivery of Social Service (KALAHI-CIDSS) were mobilized to assist the local government to evaluate the damage caused by the earthquake to affected communities, which includes the power disruption in affected municipalities.
During an earlier visit she made to Ormoc to see to the relief operations there, DSWD Secretary Judy M. Taguiwalo said that she will look into possible options to address the concerns of communities such as the lack of power supply through the provision of solar lamps to help barangay tanods to secure the area and keep track of the location of community members.
She also asked community members to implement a buddy system so they can assist each other and protect members of vulnerable groups such as the senior citizens, persons with disability, children, and pregnant women. For instance, there are designated restrooms which are far from the space where the evacuees are staying and said vulnerable members need assistance when it comes to security concerns.
Finally, the Secretary also explained that the DSWD will continue to assess the situation of displaced persons in Leyte to prepare them for early recovery and rehabilitation phase.
“We will continue to assess the damage brought by the earthquake in Leyte so that we can determine how much they need so they can repair their houses and rebuild their lives. For now, various disaster response agencies are coordinating with the local government and non-government organizations to provide the basic needs of all affected families,” she said. SMS DSWD / MCAG