Mary Joy Maling-on, 38, and her eight children receive a hygiene kit, including soap and toothbrushes. | © M. Ruiz / HI
In Surigao, Philippines, HI distributes hygiene kits and multi-purpose cash assistance to families affected by typhoon Rai in December.
HI has launched actions to help people affected by typhoon Rai, which hit the Philippines in December. Many families have been displaced and are living in evacuation centers, waiting to rebuild their homes.
HI and its partners have started to distribute hygiene kits to families in Surigao. These kits include soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, towels, sanitary napkins, a bedpan, cloth masks and a 5-gallon water container, among other items.
38-year-old Mary Joy Maling-on had to evacuate her house with her eight children. As their house is located in a landslide-prone area, they cannot go back. She received one of HI’s hygiene kits and says, "Thank you so much for the kit. It will be useful to my children, especially the soap and toothbrushes.”
Alexander, 47 years old, has difficulty walking. His family shares a classroom on the second floor of a school currently serving as an evacuation center. They live there with five other families, a total of 15 people.
"Thank you very much for the hygiene kit, particularly the bedpan that I can use at night,” he says. “The restroom is on the ground floor of the next building, and I only have my lighter to find my way in the dark.”
HI and its partners also distributed multi-purpose cash and, as of today, have reached 271 displaced families. After receiving cash assistance, Teresa, Vena, Wahida, Asna, and Anida immediately bought diapers for their children, between 1 and 2 years old.
According to Vena, she will also buy cooking utensils such as plates and glasses. "Someone gave us sardines, but we also like cassava. With the money, I will buy cassava, charcoal and fish. Thank you!”
Many families have been displaced and are living in emergency evacuation centers, set up in schools for example. Faced with the situation, families must prioritize finding food and drinking water, both of which are lacking at present. Children’s education has therefore been temporarily put on hold.
HI is working with the Surigao City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) and JPIC-IDC to help vulnerable people.