NetHope Situation Report 3 — 2013-11-11

Overall Situation

Over 9.6 million people were affected when Typhoon Haiyan (local name Yolanda), one of the strongest typhoons ever recorded, crossed the Philippines on November 8th. The number of casualties is expected to be over 10,000 and humanitarian organizations say it will take months, if not years, to recover in the worst hit areas — where over 80% of the houses were destroyed.

Th worst hit areas are around the cities of Tacloban, Guiuan, Ormoc,Aklan, Bogo, Cardiz, and Roxas — as can be seen on the map above.

Humanitarian response is only starting in most areas, as transportation and communication has been severely hampering the relief efforts. Due to the level of destruction, humanitarian organizations have ramped up their response and relief items and teams are starting to arrive in the area.

The focus right now is on bringing in basic lifesaving items, such as food, water, and shelter, while also establishing a coordination structure and communication infrastructure to support relief and recovery efforts for at least the next 6-12 months.

General Coordination

The UN Disaster Assessment and Coordination (UNDAC) and UN OCHA, in collaboration with the Government of Philippines, has set up humanitarian coordination hubs in Tacloban City and Roxas City. The location for a third coordination hub is being determined. UNDAC has also set up a Reception Center (RDC) at Tacloban Airport, where all arriving teams need to register.

Telecommunication Situation

At the request of the Government of the Philippines, the UN has activated its Emergency Telecommunication Cluster (ETC), which is coordinating all the emergency telecommunication aspects for the international community. The ETC has deployed an ETC Coordinator and an ETC NGO Coordinator to the Philippines and is deploying additional personnel and equipment to support the humanitarian response.

NetHope is closely collaborating with the ETC and is deploying a response team along with partner organizations to support the ETC, its NGO members and others in the humanitarian community with communication services.

The telecommunication provider Globe reports that they continue working on restoration of communication services. According to their latest reports 50% of cell services have been restored. In Visayas regions 42% of 3G networks are up and 31% of 2G networks are up. In Cebu 81% of networks is operating. In Antique 54%, Capiz 10%, Iloilo 64%, and in North Samar 42% are operating.

The telecommunication provider Smart reports that they have also continued restoration work of facilities affected. Since our last report, they have established basic services in Tacloban city center.

Power interruptions remain as the biggest obstacle for restoring communication services.

Télécoms Sans Frontiérs (TSF) has delivered direct support to the Filipino government by supplying satellite telephones to the Minister for Home Affaires and National Security and his deputy. A group of TSF experts is carrying out telecom assessments and supporting local authorities providing them with satellite internet connection and satellite phones.

NetHope Member Response

The following NetHope member organizations are currently responding:

  • AmeriCares — Providing medical supplies in collaboration with local partner organizations.
  • CARE — Providing food, water, shelter, and other essential items to the survivors.
  • Catholic Relief Services — Providing water purification, shelter, material, and essential living supplies in cooperation with partners on the ground.
  • ChildFund International — Providing assistance to children and families supported through their programs in the affected areas.
  • Christian Aid — Working through local partners to provide emergency food and supplies.
  • Direct Relief — Providing emergency medicine and medical supplies through partners on the ground.
  • Heifer International — Providing support to livelihood projects affected by the typhoon.
  • International Federation of Red Cross/ Red Crescent (IFRC) — Supporting the Philippines Red Cross which is working across all sectors of the humanitarian response.
  • International Medical Corps (IMC) — Has a team on the ground providing medical interventions.
  • Islamic Relief — Islamic Relief is closely monitoring the situation through agencies already present in the area, and has placed disaster response teams on standby.
  • MercyCorps — Working with partners on the ground to provide survivors with basic needs and assistance in rebuilding.
  • Oxfam International — Working on water, public health, and sanitation for the survivors in Cebu, Samar, and Leyte.
  • Plan International — Providing water kits, plastic sheeting, and other services, in addition to providing psycho-social support to children affected by the disaster.
  • Save the Children –Providing emergency services, water and sanitation supplies. Have deployed a rapid response team to meet the needs of children in the city of Tacloban.
  • SOS Children’s Villages — They operate two villages in the affected area and are providing support to the families and children affected.
  • World Vision –Providing food, non-food items, hygiene kits, emergency shelter, and protection, especially for children and women.

NetHope has already received numerous requests for ICT support from its member organizations and their local implementation partners and is launching an emergency funding appeal to its supporters today, Monday, November 11th, 2013.

Individuals are invited to support NetHope’s work by donating to our Emergency Response Fund, whileCorporations, foundations, and other organizations interested in supporting our efforts either financially or through in-kind donation, are asked to contact our emergency group directly at emergency @ NetHope dot org.

Other Useful Information Sources

About NetHope

NetHope’s mission is to act as a catalyst for collaboration, bringing together the knowledge and power of 41 leading international humanitarian organizations so that the best information communication technology and practices can be used to serve people in the developing world.

Find out more about our work at http://www.nethope.org3 clapsFollow

Published November 11th 2013 at Medium