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  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 1

    Situation assessment

    Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda - Philippines

    7th to 18

    th December 2013

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 2


    14.1 million people affected; 6155 people dead, , 1785 missing, 4.1 million families displaced, 1.1 million houses damaged (OCHA SitRep, 3 January 2014)

    44 provinces of 9 Regions; the worst affected are Region VI – Eastern Visayas; Region VII – Central Visayas; Region VIII – Western Visayas

    Priority needs identified as:

    Temporary shelter

    Food till the next harvest in April or August in different Provinces

    Cash, in the hands of women, to meet immediate needs so that they make the choice on how it is spent whether it be hygiene kits, seeds, school supplies, etc.

    Psycho-social support in the coming months

    Seeds for rice, corn and vegetables to be given in December and January to assist early recovery

    Small livestock to revive their local economy and nutrition levels

    School supplies, uniforms and schools to be reopened

    Preventive health system to be revived

    Reassurance on personal safety

    Material that is coming in whether it is shelter material or food does not appear to meet the actual need in all areas visited. Relief appears to be quite slow in coming. OCHA Sit Rep No.23 dt 13/Dec/2013 says “Significant humanitarian needs remain despite signs of recovery in some areas”

    Improved information and people’s participation in the aid process

    Policy issues that have emerged so far: o Alternate economic activities till fishing and farming are revived o Ensure equitable access to land and ownership in women’s names for those who are relocated

    due to 40 m no build zone o Strengthening resilience and adapting to climate change in fragile areas

    Offer safe housing designs – practical to live in as well as using locally available material

    o Strengthening of capacity of local governance units as well as other collectives, co-operatives, groups or community based organisations in the area

    o Ensure information and awareness about government support and compensation packages o Ensure information and accountability in the response process

    There is a significant level of local variation in the needs of communities, support received to date and

    livelihood options. The team observed that important variations were evident at the sitio level (smallest administrative unit within a barangay), for example in the main sources of livelihoods and the prioritisation of the most urgent needs. This emphasises the need for strong community participation in decision making and programme planning at local level, and ensuring representative participation.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 3

    Table of Contents

    Introduction Page 4

    Methodology Page 7

    Summary of Needs Page 9

    Women’s Rights Information Page 11

    Psychosocial Needs Page 13

    Food Security Page 14

    Livelihoods Page 16

    Education Page 19

    Housing / Shelter Page 19

    Non-Food Items Page 22

    Water, Sanitation & Hygiene Page 22

    Information Page 23

    Resilience Building Page 24

    Existing Policies and Schemes Page 25

    Capacity Building needs Page 26

    Gaps in Current Response Page 27

    Reference Page 28

    Attendance list at meetings Page 29

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 4


    A detailed needs assessment was carried out between 7th Dec and 18th Dec 2013 in the areas

    affected by Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda in Central Philippines.

    The purpose of the assessment was to:

    Feed into the strategic planning workshop with ActionAid partners from 17-19 Dec 2013 Initiate the process for the 3-year plans of ActionAid in the Philippines to be finalised in

    March 2014

    The assessment tried to understand the needs of the affected communities, especially women, over

    the next six months to three years, the existing capacities in the communities, the responses from

    the Government and other players as well as the gaps in the response so far. To complement the

    existing quantitative data available, we prioritised capturing qualitative data and developing a

    deeper understanding of people’s perceptions and priorities at the local level.

    The assessment was co-ordinated by Gouthami (Consultant) along with the ActionAid team in the

    Philippines – Amar Nayak, Holly Miller, Khaing Zar Lin, Philemon Jazi and Rosie Oglesby. The entire

    logistics was handled by Richie Alvarez while the detailed planning with partners was efficiently

    handled by Khaing Zar Lin. The field visits were done by Gouthami, Holly, Khaing and Rosie.

    We met with:

    Affected communities, mainly women in 10 barangays out of 74 barangays where partners will work

    Barangay Captains and Councillors (Kagawads) Mayor of Santa Fe Municipality Civil Defense Officer, Chief Operations Section, ODRREM, Cebu Staff from partner organisations, Caritas Switzerland, PFI, FarDec, PKKK and Balay Mindanaw Styn Aelbers, Internews helping to run the Community Radio at Guiuan

    ActionAid and partners will be regularly updating and adding to this needs assessment over the

    coming months to capture changing needs and emerging issues.

    Background and context:

    Typhoon Yolanda, known as Haiyan internationally, made landfall in the Philippines at 4:40 am on 8th

    November 2013, at Guiuan in Eastern Samar. It continued its destructive journey across the country

    till its sixth and last landfall at Busuanga, Palawan at 10.40 pm the same night. It is thought to be the

    strongest typhoon of the last 150 years.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 5

    No. who have died 6057 (age and sex are still being worked out)1

    No. injured 27,468

    No. missing 1779

    No. of families 3,424,593

    No. of persons 16,078,181

    Displaced families 841,581

    Persons in displaced families 3,904,075

    No. of evacuation centres 383

    No. of families outside evacuation centres 820,632

    No. of persons in these families 3,802,429

    No. of houses totally damaged 551,453

    No. of houses partially damaged 591,437

    Total cost of damage 35.6 billion pesos or £895 million

    Damage to infrastructure 18 billion pesos or £459 million

    Damage to agriculture 17 billion pesos or £436 million

    Cost of assistance provided so far 1.1 billion pesos or £28.6 million

    Including amount by NGOs/Other GOs 57 million pesos or £1.4 million

    Regions 9

    Provinces 44

    Municipalities 591

    Cities 57

    Barangays 12,139

    1. 1 The data in this table has been taken from Sitrep 63 – Effects of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) dt

    15/Dec/2013 at 6:00 am by NDRRMC

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 6

    Data for the most affected regions where ActionAid will work with partners – Region VI, VII & VIII:

    Name Western Visayas Central Visayas Eastern Visayas

    No. of Barangays 3176 2136 4387

    No. of Families 840,557 1,299,436 1,006,718

    No. of persons 3,873,028 5,909,955 5,015,434

    No. of Evacuation Centres 48 3 324

    No. of families in Centres 599 47 20,280

    No. of persons 2596 240 98,694

    No. of families without a roof living outside 495,261 49,482 279,084

    No. of persons 2,240,628 205,803 1,354,132

    Total number of families without a roof 494,864 49,529 299,364

    No. of persons 2,243,224 206,043 1,452,826

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 7


    Where we went:

    Region Province Municipality Barangay Sitio

    Region VII – Central

    Visayas Cebu

    Medellin Canhabagatun



    Curva Ylaya

    Bogo Polambato Curvada






    Kangkaod Main

    San Augustin Baybay

    Region VIII – Eastern


    Samar Bassey Palaypay

    Marabot Tinabanan

    Eastern Samar Guiuan

    Leyte Ormoc Liloan San Vincente

    Puerto Bello

    We used a variety of tools including group discussions, interviews with small groups (it was

    impossible to get a person alone), participatory tools such as daily activity schedule, seasonal

    diagram, mapping and discussions around identifying the most vulnerable.

    The majority of persons we spoke to were women. There were some men present (about 10%) and

    they were active participants. There were many children present but we did not elicit responses

    directly from them. Adolescent girls did speak up as part of the discussions.

    After each discussion, we made sure that we summarised what we had understood and asked those

    present to add on or correct our impressions. This was done without hesitation and the women

    made sure that we understood what they were saying.

    Figure 1: San Vincente Sitio, Liloan Barangay

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 8


    As always time was a constraint. We used participatory tools, but we were unable to take into account the convenience of the community. We could not slow down the pace of the discussions and often it felt like we were just trying to understand a lot in very limited time.

    We were unable to probe satisfactorily into the needs of people with disabilities.

    As none of the team know the local languages, Tagalog or Visaya, we were entirely reliant on the translators who travelled with us.

    The barangays visited were selected randomly by the partners. We have not covered the geographies affected very well. The entire Eastern Visayas region was not covered.

    Exact numbers will need to come in from the partners. The data used in this assessment are from the NDRRMC Sit Rep of 15/Dec/2013 and the OCHA Sit Rep of 13/Dec/2013.

    The entitlements of the communities are still not clear from the discussions so far.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 9

    Summary of Needs

    1. Most families are still without adequate shelter and are out in the sun and rain. Shelter kits for temporary shelter have been distributed to about 12%2 of those who are affected. Temporary shelter is an immediate need, either in the form of shelter repair kits or cash to buy materials.

    2. Food supplies that are being routed at the barangay level through the barangay Captains are being distributed to all the families in the barangay equally. Food is being calculated and distributed per family rather than per person. This means that the larger families are getting lesser food per person. Communities have stocks of between one and two weeks of food. It is not clear if they will continue to receive relief beyond that, and people expressed concern about what would happen when government relief distributions cease.

    3. Cash needs to be available in women’s hands so that they are able to prioritise needs and make

    purchases for themselves.

    4. While the need for psycho-social support was not identified by the women we spoke to, it was evident in their brief references to issues of safety, security and feelings of fear.

    5. There is an urgent need to revive fishing through replacing boats and equipment. Those who

    currently do not own boats could be formed into collectives or co-operatives so that we do not encourage over fishing by giving boats to every fisherman.

    6. Seeds need to be distributed at the earliest since December is the sowing month for rice. Corn

    will be planted in May.

    7. Seeds for vegetables and fruit trees need to be distributed quickly so that the backyard gardens are revived and nutritional needs are met.

    8. Small livestock need to be replaced to ensure improved nutrition as well as to offer a buffer to

    families when they need cash urgently.

    9. While fishing and farming get back on track, there is a need to identify and offer a basket of livelihood options to mitigate risk.

    10. Children need replacement of school supplies and in some cases of uniforms.

    11. There needs to be an additional effort in retaining girls in higher classes and colleges through

    postponing of deadlines for fees and exams.

    12. The preventive health system has vanished. This could lead to health problems in the coming months, especially for pregnant women, lactating mothers, senior citizens and young children. Mosquitoes could cause a health problem in some areas.

    13. The implementation of the 40 m no build zone needs to be done sensitively with complete

    participation of the affected communities, especially women, in the decision making process.

    2. 2 OCHA Sitrep No. 23 – 13/Dec/2013

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 10

    14. Housing design is likely to be debated hotly before permanent housing is provided. Currently there are limited design options that communities are aware of. Planning needs to take into account the need to make housing resilient while having a minimal impact on the environment.

    15. There are large information needs of the community that are not being met due to several

    reasons, including lack of electricity. a. Information regarding security and safety b. About relief material being supplied c. About entitlements and compensation d. About the rehabilitation process

    16. There appears to be little or no participation of affected communities or their elected

    representatives at the barangay level in designing the relief process so far.

    17. Families have lost important documentation including IDs. There is already a backlog in the government system in issuing fresh IDs. There will now be even more pressure on the system.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 11

    a) Women’s rights information

    In the areas that ActionAid partners are working, about 90% of houses have been fully or partially damaged. Where possible, the walls around the toilets have been repaired or replaced with scrap sheets. Food has come in as part of the relief goods. It will be sufficient for about a week to the end of December. Oxfam’s assessment mentions that people are eating less since they are not sure for how long they will continue to receive food. In Kangkoad, a pregnant woman told us that all support from the health system had been stopped. The health workers were prioritising young children. She had not had any check-ups after Yolanda. However, she has had no problems. She would go for her birth to the birthing centre at Madridejos though it was damaged. A calculation by IRIN puts the number of pregnant women amongst the affected communities at 292,000. In Liloan, a young lady who had just given birth said that her birth was easy. She had gone to the Ormoc City birthing centre. However, there has been no follow-up after the birth, from the health system. In Palaypay and Tinabanan, in Samar, the women said that they had trouble breastfeeding their children since they were not producing enough milk. In Northern Cebu and Bantayan Island, women said that they did not have a problem. The difference could be due to the fact that the first two are crowded barangays with very little space for backyard gardens. On Bantayan Island, the diet was supplemented by a variety of vegetables and fruits. Even though they had lost between 50% to 75% of their backyard gardens, they were still able to have some produce. As health problems become more evident, small groups of women could be formed to help women with their health issues especially for pregnant women and lactating mothers. These groups could be provided with basic maternal health training. In Tacloban Municipality, formal and informal curfews are imposed. This has helped people to feel a greater sense of physical security. However, this has increased the level of mental insecurity as there is the feeling that there is a need for the curfew because there is a danger. It would help if more security forces could be deployed – either from the police or from the armed forces. In Liloan and Puerto Bello, Ormoc Municipality, the women were scared of supposed robbers who had been seen by others. The communities had mobilised their young men to patrol at night as well as light bonfires and hire generators for light at night. While no one had actually seen a robber, they had heard of it and were scared. The age of marriage and the age at birth of the first child could be as low as 15 and 16 as indicated by a group of girls in Tubgas, Ormoc Municipality. When we tried to probe any conflict within the community or within the family, it was denied. Since it is a sensitive topic, it will take a longer discussion to probe the issue. At the national level, the documented rate of violence against women in a marriage is 18% (one in five women). Compared to other countries in Asia, this is relatively low. In three barangays women said that men did not resort to excessive alcoholism, that they only had the occasional drink. This could also explain the lower rate of violence against women. However, in workshop discussions with local partners, there was a general belief that rates of violence against women are higher than the official statistics indicate.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 12

    Reasons for low reporting rates include: social stigmas or feelings of shame; the idea that violence within the family is a private matter; women’s economic dependence on husbands or family members etc. Further investigation is required to understand the scale of violence against women and the risks of increasing violence and exploitation in the post disaster context. The communities have not been consulted in any of the distributions so far. They have remained passive recipients. While they might joke about the excess of sardine cans or the small water bottles, they did not think it appropriate to complain about it. They were simply grateful for receiving anything at all. It is almost as if they do not expect any support from the outside world including their own government. People in northern Cebu in particular expressed that as many of the relief goods they have received so far have come from private companies or individual donations, it was not appropriate for them to complain or make demands about the relief provided. Women appeared to be active participants in receiving relief material. All the queues that we saw where relief was being distributed, was dominated by women. Regarding access to information, it appears that neither men nor women are aware of their entitlements or the relief material that is coming in till it arrives. People are not able to watch TV or listen to the radio since there is no electricity and the cost of running battery powered radios is high. Mobile phones are not very common in the barangays we visited. In Palaypay, the community had lost all their belongings including the mobile phones. On the surface, there appears to be equality between women and men. However, when we ask women what work they do, most of them say that they are housewives looking after babies. Only those with paid employment say that they work. As always, while looking at their daily schedule of activities, the reality emerges. Women are active partners in all economic activities. The only activities they do not do are going for fishing on the boats and ploughing the land. Men also take part in all household activities such as fetching water and firewood, looking after the children, etc., but do not appear to do the cooking or washing. The rights of the aging or the elderly are protected in the Constitution and can be found in Sec. 4, Article XV which gives duty for the family to care for its elderly members. Families need to be supported while carrying out this duty which will inevitably fall on women. In Puerto Bello, the women said that all prices have gone up after the typhoon. When asked if wages have gone up as well, they said that wages have gone up for men’s work after the typhoon since it was heavy work. This could have referred to the home repair and rebuilding work which is mostly done by men. However, women’s wages have not gone up after the typhoon and this could lead to a wage differential in the coming days. Most of our partners work through women’s groups at the barangay level. There is a gender committee at the barangay level that gets 5% of the budget. There is a high rate of literacy in the communities with even older women having gone to school at least up to the primary level. Article II and Article X of the Constitution mandate the decentralisation of power and the autonomy of the LGUs. Republic Act 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Act of 1991 declares that the State shall enjoy genuine and meaningful local autonomy to enable them to attain their fullest

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 13

    development as self-reliant communities and make them more effective partners in the attainment of national goals by providing a more responsive and accountable local government structure instituted through a system of decentralization whereby LGUs shall be given more powers, authority, responsibilities, and resources. The process of decentralization shall proceed from the national government to the local government units. (Study Paper on DRR in the Philippines by Luz Angeles E Blanco from PhilDHRRA for this workshop) The system of governance is decentralised to the barangay level with councillors (kagawads) being elected from each sitio. Elections are held every three years making the elected representatives fairly accountable to the communities. Currently it appears that the barangay captains wield a disproportionate amount of power. There is potential to make this decentralisation work to the advantage of the communities and build up women’s leadership within the formal structure. While there does not appear to be barriers to women’s mobility, we did not probe issues related to mobility. Policy Implications

    Ownership of assets to be jointly in women’s names Limited livelihood options for women – contribution of women to the economy Age at marriage for girls and reproductive rights Food relief meeting Nutrition standards per person and not being calculated per family

    (Sphere Standards) Availability of information so as to allay fears and increase sense of security Availability of information regarding entitlements – food, shelter, compensation for

    livelihoods lost Equal wages for equal work, and ensuring women’s work is valued equally particularly in

    cash for work schemes Revival of health system for pregnant women, lactating mothers and senior citizens

    Implications on design of programmes

    Need to have women in communities come together for regular meetings o To access information and share it o To share problems and provide comfort to each other o To discuss possible solutions o Form collectives for economic activities o To ensure delivery of health services o To ensure girls and boys stay in school

    Need for capacity building of women in leadership roles so they operate at maximum potential

    b) Psychosocial Needs

    In the three barangays we visited in Northern Cebu, we were greeted warmly and the people, mainly women and children, interacted with us openly. There was a lot of laughter and joking during the entire time. However, the mood was aptly summed up by one woman who said, “If we did not laugh, we would be crying. So it is better we laugh.” In Curva, which is away from the sea, there was no fear displayed when it started to rain. The children, especially the young ones in the age group of 18 months to 3 years, pulled off their clothes

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 14

    and ran to dance in the rain. However, in Polambato, the group told us that they got scared, especially older people and children, when the clouds started gathering, like it was when we were there. We can assume that those living closer to the sea will have greater trauma for some time to come as they faced the storm surges as well as the high speed winds. Electricity is yet to be restored in most parts of Northern Cebu. On Bantayan Island, in general, the communities said that they were not scared. However, they did sleep early because there was no electricity and because they were worried about theft. (We joked that this could lead to an increase in their already large families.) According to the Provincial office report, electricity is likely to be restored only after six months on the island. It is likely that those who live along the main roads will get power sooner than those barangays which are away from the two main roads. In Samar and Eastern Samar, electricity is yet to be restored and since it is dark by 6:00 pm, people keep indoors after that. Electricity has been restored in Ormoc city, but not in the barangays outside the city. Women do feel unsafe. They have organised the young men in their communities to do patrol duty and they themselves take turns keeping awake. This is one sector in which it is difficult to get affected communities to open up since often they have not identified their need for psycho social support. However, it is important to recognise that the impact of the disaster will be keenly felt in changed behaviour amongst some persons in the affected communities through increased aggression, withdrawal, inability to function, etc. With the health system collapsing, it is important to set up systems so that it is only the extreme case that needs to be referred to it. Implications on design of programmes

    Communication mechanism, till electricity is restored and communities are able to access TV and radio, such as physical wall posts, newsletters, etc.

    Mechanisms for affected communities to share their fears and insecurities including regular group meetings, formation of survivor collectives, etc.

    Using solar power to provide light for security, charge mobile phones, operate radios, etc.

    c) Food security The diet of the communities we visited is varied and includes rice, corn, fish, chicken, pork, mutton, beef, vegetables and fruits. Most rural families have a backyard where they grow vegetables, fruits and have some small livestock – chicken, goat, pig. A few families have cows and buffalo for ploughing. The urban families do keep some small livestock, but do not have a kitchen garden. Fishing is one of the primary occupations of most families. Men go on the boats as part of a team. Women and some men walk into the sea to pick up shell fish.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 15

    Nutrition is provided from a variety of sources, many of which are directly controlled by the women. Only rice is bought from the market with cash normally. However, now, between 50 to 75% of the corn, vegetables, fruits and small livestock has been damaged. The vegetables and fruit will take about 3 months to recover. The next corn harvest is due in April or August depending on when the sowing takes place and if the land is usable. We found variations from one sitio to the next (Kampingganon barangay) on crop patterns. So planning cannot be generalised but will have to go down to the sitio level. Since boats and fishing equipment have been damaged, men are not able to go out fishing. Since many of the people we met do not own boats, they have to wait for the boat owners to repair the boats and equipment before they can resume their own livelihoods. Meanwhile they are only able to walk out into the sea to collect shellfish and small fish. There were mixed reports about the fish catch that is coming in. While in one barangay we were told that it is good, in a neighbouring one we were told that it is very poor. When asked to compare with last year, they said that last year they had enough for a good Christmas party, while this year it has been quite poor. Overall the fish catch in the Philippines has declined by about 50% since 2005-06. (OCHA Report) RMP has been working on co-operative ownership of fishing and this model can be examined for other areas as well. Bantayan Island is the “egg basket” of Cebu Province. Several of the poultry farms have been seriously affected. We were told that egg prices have already gone up marginally (by 25 centavos in Cebu city) and are likely to go up further. On Bantayan Island, women said that they handle the small livestock. They sell them to agents who come to the village. The money remains with them. In Leyte, the women explained that they grow both rice and corn. Depending on their level of indebtedness, they often have to sell their crop for low prices and buy during times of need at higher prices. In general during July and August, before the harvest, there is less food in the house. They ensure that the children get enough to eat, but both women and men eat less. This could be probed further. They also said that the prices of food items have gone up. Rice has increased from 38 pesos a kilo to 50 pesos a kilo, as at mid December 2013. The local markets appear to have started functioning and the women said that everything was available now in the market. What was missing was the cash in their hands to buy what they needed. Implications on programme design

    Speedy distribution of seeds to ensure sowing of rice and vegetables takes place as soon as possible

    Accessing compensation package for small livestock or replacing them through grants Exploring concepts such as grain banks, savings groups, etc.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 16

    d) Livelihoods (can cross refer to livelihoods analysis)

    We did a rapid vulnerability analysis in San Augustin on Bantayan Island, where we tried to understand who the people were most in need and what were the criteria that would be used for selecting those people. There were a total of 68 families in the sitio. They identified 7 families as those most in need. The criteria they used were:

    Woman separated from husband and with several (5) children Woman with 7 children and whose husband does not have a job Woman with several children and whose husband does not have a regular job Older women whose husbands had died and whose children lived separately When asked if older men who lived alone needed help, they laughed and said that all he

    needed was a wife!

    In San Vincente in Ormoc Municipality, further criteria were added:

    Households with more than one family Persons below the poverty line as identified by the Government scheme (applicable only in

    some barangays)

    The main livelihoods that we were able to list are:

    Fishing Farming Construction work Tri-cycle operators Working in malls in Ormoc City Sugar cane cutters Poultry workers on Bantayan Island Carpenters Basket weaving, mat weaving, shell craft, mat embroidery, making bags with recycled

    materials (crafts) Small businesses – shop, tailor, sticky rice sweets, umbrella repair, etc. Livestock – chicken, goat, pig, cow (buffalo are kept for ploughing) Backyard gardens that have a range of vegetables and fruit (for consumption and the local

    market) Coconut and Banana – I list this separately as these are also grown for the market All the major livelihoods have been affected.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 17

    Figure 2 Seasonal Diagram, Kampingganon

    Corn is sown in May and then again in September. Harvesting is in August and January. However, the harvest this January is not likely to yield much as the crop loss is between 50% and 75%. Rice should be sown now and then the next crop will be in May/June. Sowing is visible in some areas. There are reports that the Agriculture Dept is distributing seeds and fertilizer. However, in the barangays visited, this was not the case. If seeds are to be distributed, that needs to be done so before the end of December to be effective. In Kampingganon, the women suggested that since agriculture would take a long time to give returns, their husbands should be supported to get back to fishing quickly. Many of the men from here worked on others’ boats. So rather than wait for them to repair or replace the boats, they suggested that they receive boats and fishing equipment. Some of the women were engaged in the buying and selling of fish and they had no business now since there was no fishing. In Palaypay, the fields have been inundated with sea water. The women said that it would take a year for the land to be usable again. They asked that other livelihood options be thought and supported. They could only think of small livestock and making bags out of recycled material. Here the families do not own the land. They take it on lease – the land ranges from ½ a unit to 3 units. All the women said that they do not work, that they are only housewives. However, when probed, they do all the farming activities except ploughing. They explained that the fish catch peaks in May & June and again from October to December. This year, they have lost that crucial income as the boats and equipment is totally damaged. Driving from Tacloban to Guiuan along the coast, I could count on my hand how many boats I saw that are still intact. The banana crop is almost fully gone now. It will take about a year for it to bear fruit if planted again. From Tacloban to Guiuan the coconut trees are completely gone. However in other parts the loss is between 50% to 75%. The coconut trees will take between 3 and 7 years to grow again and yield. The environmental effect of the loss of the trees is also to be assessed.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 18

    While there is plenty of scrap metal available now, the prices have gone down. Similarly for firewood. It is not clear if timber wood from coconut trees will see a downward price trend as well. Loss of Livestock in Cebu Province:

    Type No. of hh* Total animals Animal loss Value in peso

    Avg cost per head

    Cattle 60 2335 116 3,016,000 26,000

    Carabao/Buffalo 1295 67 1,926,250 28,750

    Goat 225 4182 735 2,521,800 3431

    Chicken 2361 30,076 6984 801,345 115

    Pigs 5077 530 7,458,900 14,073

    *since there are gaps in the data, it is not consistent, but I place it here to give an idea of scale.

    Insurance claims of 2464 farmers and fisherfolk amounting to 39,852,000 pesos are being processed in Northern Cebu. (avg of 16,173 pesos)3. We were told that compensation will be given for livestock as well. We are awaiting details. There is a shortage of cash in people’s hands. Families have begun to sell off their small livestock so as to have cash for food, medicines and to repair their homes. One girl asked me if there would be a waiver of college fees as her fees are due on 16th December and if she does not pay it, then she will have to drop out of college. She said that there were others in a similar condition, both boys and girls. There is work available cutting sugarcane in Northern Cebu. However, it is only after two weeks that the wages will come in. The cutting has just started. There is an official minimum wage in place, which agencies appear to be using in their cash for work programmes (in Santa Fe Municipality Office, information posters stated 282 pesos per day for one NGO programme). However, during our discussions, the amount that women said they normally earned was between 100 and 200 pesos. There was no discrimination between men and women in terms of wages before the typhoon. Now, they say that the wages for men has gone up since they are doing the heavy work of house repair and rebuilding, whilst women’s wages have not increased. Remittances from family members who work in the cities around the Philippines or outside the country are a large part of the economy. This has been one of the important coping strategies for families. (8.5% of total economic output in 2012)4

    The houses built by those who work overseas are usually large and well built. In many barangays, these served as evacuation centres right after the typhoon. Policy Implications

    Suitable livelihoods for those who are moved from the 40 m no build zone Quick compensation for loss of boats, equipment, farm tools, small livestock, crops (rice,

    corn, banana, coconut, etc.) Waiver of bank loans Credit support during hunger period Ensuring that the minimum wage is being paid through pressure by women’s groups

    3 Sitrep from Province of Cebu dt 6/Dec/2013

    44 http://www.philstar.com/business/2013/02/15/909187/2012-remittances-hit-record-high


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    Implications for programme design

    Quick distribution of seeds, small livestock A greater basket of livelihood options to supplement fishing and farming till it is revived Identifying these alternate livelihood options and providing appropriate training Providing information on compensation packages and helping to access them

    e) Education

    In the Province of Cebu, a total of 87 schools have been affected. 388 classrooms are totally damaged while 121 classrooms are still in good condition. The Government of South Korea has offered to rebuild all schools that have been affected in the Province of Cebu. In the urban areas, schools are still being used as evacuation centres. However, in the barangays that we visited they had become operational. All the schools were at least partially damaged. So schools were running in two shifts to accommodate all children. Free school meal – there appears to be a scheme where children below a certain ideal weight and belonging to the poorer sections are given in a supplementary meal. However, this has been currently discontinued. All those who came for our meetings had at least attended primary school. While this should be expected in a country that reports an average literacy rate of above 90%, I was surprised that women, even in these far flung areas were literate. In Curva, a college-going girl said that some children may drop out of higher classes and college to help their families since funds would be scarce within the family. We did not probe if it would be only for girls and or even for boys. In Tinabanan, Marabot Municipality, the schools would only re-open on 15th January. Since most families had lost the school supplies and uniforms for children, the mothers were not sure how they would be replaced. In Palaypay, since the houses had been washed away, women said that they needed both school supplies as well as school uniforms. In Leyte, the need was mainly for school supplies. Policy Implications

    Waiver or moratorium on fees at schools and colleges, even private ones Replacement for school uniforms and supplies

    f) Housing/shelter The right to shelter and services is enshrined in Sections 9 and 10 of Article XIII of the Philippine Constitution. The data from the NDRRMC indicates that the percentage of houses that have been damaged either partially or fully is 59% in Western Visayas, 5% in Central Visayas and 23% in Eastern Visayas.

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    Based on the barangays that we visited, the data for the areas where ActionAid partners will be working appears to indicate a starker picture. These numbers are approximations or from memory and need to be verified. They are given here as an indication of the scale only.

    Barangay Sitio Total hh Fully damaged Partially damaged

    Canhabagatan Nabara 61 About half About half

    Mahayahay 30 All damaged fully or partially

    Curva 527 228 Very few untouched

    Ylaya 48 32 16

    Kangkaod 700 525

    San Vincente 145 90

    Puerto Bello 1044 400

    After the typhoon a Government decision has been taken to move all families 40 metres away from the coastline. This is likely to have a large impact on the fishing communities as their livelihood depends on being close to the sea. It is unlikely that their new location will be close to the sea as vacant land is likely to be more inland.

    Everywhere we visited the weather was similar. The sun was piercing hot in the morning and by afternoon or evening there would be a few showers, some of them quite heavy. This weather is likely to continue through to February. March to May are the summer months. And then the rains are from June to November. So it is important for affected people to have shelter quickly. When asked whether they want permanent housing or temporary shelter, they said they would like something quickly even if it is just temporary as their children were falling ill by being out in the sun and rain. Those who had lost their small livestock such as chickens or goats said that they would need to have some enclosed space before they would replace these. Where possible, the walls around the toilets have been repaired or replaced with scrap sheets. Women were asking for some sheets for the roof, bamboo mats for the walls and nails and a hammer. They referred to it as barong-baarong, roughly translated as shack. The men in the families would put up these shacks quite quickly. In families where there were no men, the women knew how to put it up or their neighbours would help. In Curva, Ylaya the women suggested that it would be useful to get labour from outside so that the houses could come up faster. As there was a downpour during our discussion, the urgency was understandable. In Polambato the women joked that though it was hot, they did not feel it since the breeze was not stopped by any walls.

    When asked if GI sheets were a hazard during typhoons, they agreed that it was. In Polambato they had heard that 11 people had died because they were hit by GI sheets. However, they did not know what the alternative could be. Nipa roofs needed to be replaced every year and was getting more difficult to find. In Polambato, the Barangay captain had received 150 tarpaulin sheets when there were about 800 households in the barangay. We repeatedly heard this statement. In Puerto Bello, they had received 80 shelter kits when there were 1044 households. There the Barangay captain had decided to prioritise families that had pregnant women, senior citizens and small children. The OCHA report

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 21

    puts those who have received temporary material at 130,000 even though about 1.1 million houses have been damaged (about 12%, 5 weeks after).

    The estimates we received ranged from 8000 pesos to 20,000 pesos for temporary shelter. For permanent housing it went upto 300,000 pesos. In Eastern Samar, since a lot of coconut trees have fallen, they could be used for building shelter if the appropriate cutting tools were available. Local partners report that it is necessary to apply for licenses from local authorities before chainsaws can be used. The pattern of housing is clustered in more urbanised areas such as Bassey, Marabot and Guiuan Municipalities. In the other areas that we visited, each house was set apart from the next with sufficient land around for a small backyard garden and to keep small livestock. Some of the households had more than one family – usually a separated daughter and her children. A more accurate estimate of this is needed. Houses are made up of several structures. The main structure is the strongest and is the living quarters. Around it are smaller structures where the cooking takes places, the small livestock are kept, the grain is stored and the toilet. These are made of bamboo and nipa. In San Augustin, we saw one house where the room where the corn was stored was made of bamboo walls. It had survived the typhoon and the family had moved there! The roof was of GI sheets salvaged from the typhoon. Many of the women we spoke to did not own land – they leased it for agriculture. In Palaypay, the criterion for membership to the women’s group was that they should not even own the land that their house stood on.

    Bantayan Island The Mayor of Sante Fe Municipality told us that he would be moving 2300 families to comply with the 40m no build zone. He has identified a new location where each family would get 100 sq m of land. He has designed a house that is 30 sq m. Each house will cost about 250,000 pesos. He will first get 50 houses constructed. He is yet to consult with those who are to be moved regarding the new location or the design of their new houses. However, he requested that support not be provided to these families to reconstruct in their old locations. The two sitios that would be affected by this relocation are Cantalan of Talisay Barangay and Abuno of Ocoy Barangay. Given the geography of the affected Regions, this is likely to be a big issue in the coming months. Policy Implications

    Speed in setting up temporary shelter by distributing material or cash to affected families Relocation of families living within 40 m of the coastline – their complete participation in the

    decision making process Preventing land grab in this 40 m zone Will the housing be per family or per household? Will the size of housing reflect the family size which varies considerably? Resilience of new houses What materials will be used for temporary and permanent shelter?

    Implications for programme design

    Speedy release of funds Temporary shelter before Christmas Communities, especially women, to lead the process of designing new houses

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    g) Non-food items (NFIs) Almost all the women said that they needed hygiene kits that included soap, sanitary napkins, toothpaste and toothbrush. In Palaypay, since all the belongings had been washed away, the women said that they would appreciate a spare set of underclothes so that they did not have to wash and wear the same set every day. However in other locations people reported that they had sufficient clothing, or had already received clothes in relief distributions. If the women were to receive cash in their hands, they could prioritise their needs and buy accordingly without having to ask anyone. This could be through direct cash transfers or cash for work programmes to rebuild houses, rejuvenate the mangroves, etc. To ensure that prices do not sky rocket, community stores could be set up with fair prices. This could also be a source of income for a women’s group. There is a need to ensure that transportation costs are also reasonable and another collective could be formed for this. In the far-flung islands, transport itself is a problem since boats have been lost or badly damaged. In the smaller islands off Panay Island this has slowed down the relief work as well as pushed up costs. Documentation and IDs have been lost especially in houses by the sea where the storm surge came in. Replacement will be an arduous task given that there was already a backlog in issuing some of the papers. In Ylaya, the women asked for blankets. When I asked why they needed blankets when it was so hot even at night, they said that they covered themselves up fully to protect from mosquitoes. They used mosquito killer coils (smoke) as they cannot afford to buy mosquito nets. It is not clear if malaria, dengue or other mosquito transmitted diseases are common in these areas. Firewood is now freely available and women are using it for the cooking. Policy Implications

    Systems for re-issuing important documents

    h) Water, sanitation and hygiene In Northern Cebu, while water is available from open wells, it is brackish. So people use it for cooking, washing and bathing. For drinking, they prefer to get bottled water. On Bantayan Island, drinking water is available from wells. In Eastern Visayas, the women did not list water as one of their needs. They did mention the need for soap. In the more urban areas of Leyte, availability of drinking water is likely to pose a problem once the relief supplies are over. There is a need to revive the drinking water systems or ensure that household level water purifying systems are made available.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 23

    i) Information

    Before Yolanda, the community members relied on TV or the radio for news updates. However, currently with no electricity, these two sources are not available in the affected areas. Mobile phones are available in some areas, but since there is no electricity, the battery is recharged on payment of a fee at some urban and semi-urban areas. We were told repeatedly that information is flowing only through personal networks rather than official channels such as barangay level meetings. If we prioritise the information needs of the community currently, they relate to:

    Food Shelter and shelter materials Security Livelihoods – seeds, livestock, replacement of fishing equipment School supplies, deadlines for payment of fees

    Figure 3 Distribution by BMFI in Ormoc Municipality with a clear listing of contents

    In Northern Cebu and Bantayan Island, power is unlikely to be restored for the next six months. So the main information sources of TV and radio will not be available for the communities living here. Those who own mobile phones have to pay to recharge their phones – given the cash constraints, it is not clear for how long they will continue to do this. In addition to the lack of electricity, many people reported losing radios in the typhoon- more accurate information is required on precise numbers. Eastern Samar 92.9 FM is Radio Bakdaw in Guiuan. Bakdaw means “stand-up” in Tagalog. It was supported by Internews to share news about relief work, provide much needed entertainment and receive feedback on the relief work. They receive some 300 SMS each day even though there is no electricity. Solar rechargeable radios were being provided as part of Bakdaw radio program, while most people listen to it on their mobile phones for which they pay to charge the batteries now. We listened to a programme where a Government official was explaining about the electricity and water meters replacement. The range of this station is about 80 to 100 km. The other radio stations are from Cebu and Manila and are the regular entertainment programmes.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 24

    News and information appears to be travelling along the grape vine through rumours. The barangay captains are informed when there are relief goods being sent to them. They then communicate with the councillors (kagawads). Everyone else gets to hear about relief from a friend or neighbour or someone they know. There were rumours that aid is being delayed at various stages in the system, or that aid is being misappropriated. The common language across the Philippines is Tagalog. The language spoken in the Visayas is Visaya or Cebuano.

    Speaking with the communities particularly in rural areas, it does not appear that they are looking for a channel to share their needs with the Government or other aid providers- mainly because they seem unaware that they are entitled to do so. When asked what information gaps they experienced, many people struggled to answer the question. They need help but they appear unsure as to how to ask for it, perhaps because they have not done so before. There does not appear to be a feeling that they are entitled to support for rebuilding their lives and livelihoods. This could change as more relief comes in. In the Constitution, Article XI Section 5 is about the creation of the independent Office of the Ombudsman to act as protectors of the people by acting on complaints filed in any form or manner against public officials or employees. Policy Implications

    Right to information on relief and rehabilitation Process of recording feedback from communities on their specific needs, complaints, etc.

    Implications for programme design

    Setting up a mechanism for communication, including ‘low tech’ solutions – given the high literacy rate, wall posters, newsletters, etc. are an option till electricity is restored

    Community radio in more areas, together with distribution of radios that can be used without electricity supply

    Creating linkages between communities and government/coordination mechanisms to ensure their voices are heard. Make better use of the existing committees at barangay level.

    j) Resilience building

    The main risk that these communities face is from typhoons which rage every year between June and November. They are also in an earthquake prone zone. Those on the coast are in danger of storm surges and tsunamis triggered by earthquakes. Those who live in the hilly areas face the risk of landslides and mudslides. The impact of Climate Change is felt in all the regions. The Government would like to use this as an opportunity to move communities 40 m away from the coastline to reduce their risk from storm surges and tsunamis. The women were wondering if there was an alternative roofing material so that the risk that the GI sheets pose during a typhoon could be reduced. While nipa is traditionally used, it needs to be replaced each year and is becoming more expensive and difficult to find. In Leyte, there are reports that communities did not understand the implications of the phrase “storm surge” and hence did not move away from the coastline. Their evacuation centres were also inundated and lives lost when the centres were flooded leaving no escape route.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 25

    Finally, the relief material is being distributed at the Barangay captain. While not all agencies co-ordinate with her/him, the Government relief does come through the captain. The other kagawads do not appear to play an important role in the process. This is an opportunity to strengthen the local level leadership and ensure that power is better shared at the barangay level. There is a fair representation of women at this level and this could be an opportunity to build their capacities. One volunteer from a local partner organisation who accompanied us for a day, was earlier a Councillor/Kagawad. She was able to access Government funds to build up the livelihood activities of the Palaypay and Tinabanan women’s groups. Policy Implications

    Ensuring new constructions are resilient Ensuring that the relocation process is in the best interests of communities and not misused

    by real estate sector

    Implications for programme design Integrating DRR into mainstream development work and not seeing it as an isolated sector Ensuring that standardized relief packages and compensations are in place which take into

    account nutrition needs, special needs while being flexible across the country

    k) Existing policies and schemes

    Republic Act No.10121 saw to the setting up of the Philippines Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act. This ensures the integration of Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Action into development plans at every level. “The Local Calamity Fund or the Local DRRM Fund will be established for the purpose of implementing RA 10121 at the local level. It should not be less than 5% from the regular source of income of LGUs to support DRR activities; 30% of the 5% shall be allotted for Quick Response Fund (QRF) while the 70% is allotted for disaster prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response, rehab, and recovery.” (Study Paper on DRR in the Philippines by Luz Angeles E Blanco from PhilDHRRA for this workshop) While there are strong laws and institutions at the Government level to help those affected by Climate Change and disasters, this does not appear to have translated into adequate relief materials for communities affected by Yolanda. For example, there does not appear to be any entitlements per person in terms of food or shelter material. So if barangay captains receive a certain quantity of food or shelter material they are trying hard to distribute it equitably. Some corruption charges were explained when it was found that the barangay captain was repackaging to ensure equity rather than pilfering. Given the situation this would translate into a standard package being given to each family regardless of family size. In the barangays in Northern Cebu, we found there are between 4 and 9 children in each family, making the national average family size figure of 5 to be very low. While in Ormoc Municipality, women had between 1 and 3 children, closer to the national average. Relief was being calculated per family rather than per person. In such a situation it is unlikely that the Sphere standards are even part of the debate, leave alone being used to ensure that nutrition needs or special needs are being met.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 26

    In Leyte, the Balay Mindanaw team mentioned that there two barangays with populations of about 500 families each that had yet to be reached because there was no road. There was repeated mention of “communities in the mountains” but we were unable to confirm any details about them. Currently it does not appear that affected communities are in any way involved in decisions related to relief and rehabilitation. The average money spent so far on relief is 334 pesos per family. This includes Government, NGOs, INGOs and other Governments as per the NDRRMC sit rep of 15/Dec. The OCHA report mentions that $501 million has been spent so far. This translates into about 6,336 pesos per family. The Strategic Response Plan for Typhoon Haiyan is pegged at $791 million for the next year (10,000 pesos per family). There is a potential to strengthen the LGU members in the rehabilitation phase. Alongside, systems to share information – from the communities to the Government and the reverse need to be set up. With the high literacy levels, the sharing process could be easily set up. Once communities are aware of their entitlements, they are more likely to be in a position to demand it as a right. The Philippines DRRMA does have an accountability clause - the utilisation of funds at both local and national level would be available to public in the websites or display at a public place. (Rule 18, Section-5) Policy Implications

    Strengthening of LGUs Setting up accountability systems at the barangay level Ensuring speedy relief and rehabilitation Community monitoring of aid budgets and delivery (people repeatedly said that they knew

    money had come in/been allocated for this disaster, but they didn’t know why it had got stuck or wasn’t being released at local level).

    l) Capacity building


    A rapid assessment has been done and 7 partners selected for the relief phase over the next six months. Most of the partners are large organizations who are used to dealing with multiple donors. They have initiated their work with existing staff and will quickly recruit new staff for the emergency work. Capacity building will be needed in the areas of accountability, targeting and planning. Community

    Most of the partners work with community groups, collectives and co-operatives at the barangay level. These include women’s groups, fisherman collectives, etc.

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 27

    Gaps in current response

    There are four broad gap areas that can be described: 1. It has been five weeks since Yolanda hit. However, people have still not received support for

    rebuilding their shelter. As per the OCHA report only about 12% of those who have had their houses damaged either fully or partially have received temporary shelter material. It is not clear why the response is proceeding at this pace. This issue needs to be understood in more detail. However, in the interim, temporary shelter material needs to be distributed as quickly as possible. Since markets are operating, we could also distribute cash to women, so that they can buy the exact material that they need for rebuilding.

    2. Food relief appears to be in waves and it is evident that it is not sufficient to meet the nutrition needs of the affected communities. (Sphere standards are not even mentioned.) Food relief needs to be better planned so as to ensure each person gets an appropriate share rather than each family since family size varies hugely. The family size also varies between regions. Food relief needs to continue till families are able to get their food either from their own farms, fishing, gardens, etc. or from incomes coming in through wages or livelihood activities.

    3. There is a shortage of cash in people’s hands – especially for women. This means that they are unable to take decisions on their own priorities such as hygiene kits. Cash for work programmes need to be initiated speedily.

    4. Affected communities are not involved in any part of the planning process or decision making for

    relief. They also have no information on relief coming in, their entitlements or compensation.

    As one dignified lady asked us in Polambato, “when is the help going to


  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 28


    1. Sitrep 63 – Effects of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) dt 15/Dec/2013 at 6:00 am by NDRRMC

    2. OCHA Sitrep No. 23 – 13/Dec/2013

    3. Mr Dennis J Chiong, Civil Defense Officer, Chief Operations Section, Cebu ODRREM

    4. Sitrep from Province of Cebu dt 6/Dec/2013

    5. Mayor, Santa Fe Municipality, Bantayan Island, Cebu Province

    6. Study Paper: Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction Law and other supporting laws to climate

    change, December 6, 2013, prepared by Luz Angeles A. Blanco, MA Development Studies, PhilDHRRA Regional Coordinator for the Visayas Region

    7. The 1987 Philippine Constitution and Human Rights: A Developmental Perspective by Ms. Ruth

    N. Restauro, political science instructor of the University of San Jose-Recoletos and University of Southern Philippines, is written for Philippine Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Areas (PhilDHRRA)

    8. Philippines Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act, 2010

    9. ActionAId proposal to DEC, December 2013

    10. Photo Credits – Holly Miller, ActionAid Australia and Khaing Zar Lin, ActionAid Myanmar

    11. MIRA Report – Typhoon Haiyan, Philippines, November 2013

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 29

    List of persons who attended the meetings:

    Figure 4 Kampingganon

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 30

    Figure 5 Tinabanon

  • Detailed Needs Assessment – Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, December 2013 Page 31

    Figure 6 Tinabanon

    Figure 7 Ylaya