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ASIA-PACIFIC Philippines

© UNICEF/NYHQ2006-2132/Bito

A boy walks down the rubble-filled main street of Barangay San Isidro, Luzon Island, surveying the damage caused by a typhoon in 2006. Each year, an estimated 850,000 Filipinos are displaced by natural disasters and conflict.

Critical Issues for Children and Women

The Philippines has a population of just over 90 million, where over 48 million live in areas prone to either disasters or conflict and where, on average, an estimated 850,000 people are recorded as being displaced each year by the Department of Social Welfare and Development. In 2009, due to both natural disasters and conflict more than a million people were displaced – around half of whom are children. For these people, access to appropriate health and nutrition care, safe drinking water, sanitation and education, as well as overarching community-based child protection systems are urgently needed.  

Planned Humanitarian Action for 2010

In 2010, UNICEF will work alongside the Government of the Philippines, NGO partners, communities and United Nations agencies in order to continue emergency relief and recovery for the more than 700,000 people displaced as a result of natural disasters in 2009 and the more than 300,000 people displaced by conflict in Mindanao. The preparedness and responses in 2010 will be guided by the Core Commitments for Children, focusing on the ongoing humanitarian needs of internally displaced people living in evacuation centres.  UNICEF will work on ensuring access to health and nutrition services, safe water, sanitation and hygiene, a safe learning environment and child protection support.  UNICEF will also work with cluster partners to maintain preparedness stocks and contingency planning for all scenarios, such as additional displacement or more durable solutions such as return or resettlement. Following are the expected results of UNICEF’s emergency interventions:

Health and Nutrition: Together with the Department of Health and the World Health Organization, UNICEF will provide immediate response to ensure access to essential health and nutrition care for over 150,000 children and pregnant and lactating women. Essential health-care services and supplies will be delivered via outreach mobile clinics.  UNICEF will develop an effective nutrition surveillance system to monitor the nutritional status of conflict-affected children under five, support community-based management of acute malnutrition and infant and young child feeding in emergencies, and ensure adequate coverage of micronutrient interventions.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH): Reliable access to safe water supply, proper sanitation facilities and hygiene promotion activities will be ensured for up to 120,000 conflict-affected persons in displaced camps, as well as those affected by natural hazards. UNICEF, as co-lead of the WASH Cluster with the Department of Health, will also work with the Government to expand programmes to areas of return.

Education: UNICEF co-leads the Education Cluster where all partners are committed to re-establishing access to safe and secure education for 54,000 disaster-affected and returnee children. This will be done, in partnership with NGOs, through the establishment of temporary learning spaces, repair of damaged schools, provision of learning materials, as well as training of teachers and day-care workers in psychosocial support and accelerated learning to help pupils reintegrate into the school system.

Child Protection:  UNICEF and partners will build community-based systems to respond to a situation where over 150,000 disaster- or conflict-affected children remain exposed to potential risks including recruitment by armed groups, unexploded ordnances and trafficking.  Special assistance will also be provided to separated and unaccompanied children, as well as to children at risk of recruitment for armed conflict or formerly associated with armed groups.

Summary of UNICEF Emergency Needs to fulfil
Core Commitments for Children for 2010
Sector US$
Health 4,000,000
Nutrition 1,000,000
Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) 6,000,000
Education 3,200,000
Child Protection 3,500,000
HIV/AIDS 190,000
Total 17,890,000