The death toll in last Tuesday’s earthquake that hit the Philippines has touched 198, with 185 of those occurring in Bohol, the epicenter of the 7.2 Richter quake.  More than 2.9 million people have been affected and 378,000 families are displaced, while many more are staying across 104 evacuation centres.

Singapore humanitarian relief and development NGO, Mercy Relief (MR), had its assessment personnel at the affected grounds of Bohol within 15 hours from the appeal for assistance by the Philippine’s Citizens’ Disaster Response Center (CDRC) last Friday evening, and joined by its relief team the next day.

The 5-man team personally deployed the manual-powered PedalPure water filtration systems across the devastated municipalities of Loon, Antequera and Sagbayan, manouvering around collapsed bridges, cracked roads and landslides, with the conditions worsened by persistent rains which made the soil-laden roads slippery.  With access to clean water restored, the MR team distributed food parcels comprising rice, canned food, noodles and preserved seafood to over 600 families in Bohol.

Leading the relief team, MR’s chief Hassan Ahmad said, “Strong aftershocks can still be felt daily.  The survivors are too traumatised to return to their homes.  The priority is to continue reaching out to the more remote communities to provide the much-needed clean water and food for their survival.  Persistent bad weather is slowing down those efforts but everyone is chipping in –from the government agencies, the local people’s organisations and the NGOs –all trying to help stabilise the situation for everyone affected”.

The first tranche of aid worth SGD20,000 was through the early donations from Cuffz Holdings and Cargill.  The PedalPure systems reached Bohol safely and swiftly with the assistance from the Philippines embassy in Singapore which facilitated the cross-border administrative requirements and the Philippines Airlines (PAL) which provided complimentary cargo space.

 

Homes and public buildings were badly damaged by the 7.2 magnitude earthquake.

 

More than 600,000 people are displaced and living in temporary shelters, with limited basic needs.

  

Deliveries of relief supplies were slowed down by collapsed bridges, damaged roads and landslides caused by ongoing landslides and downpours.

 

MR’s water filtration systems were deployed to severely-affected areas to provide clean and potable water to the communities.

 

Over 600 families in Bohol received jerry cans and food parcels comprising rice, canned food, noodles and preserved seafood.

 

MR worked alongside local authorities and community leaders for the distribution of aid supplies to the affected communities.

* MR has been implementing relief and development projects in five areas across the Philippines – Bicol Region, Metro Manila, Mindanao, Zambales and Visayas – continuously since 2006 as part of its disaster risk reduction efforts in line with the Hyogo Framework and AADMER.  Click here to read more on “MR in the Philippines”.

About Mercy Relief

Mercy Relief is a Singaporean humanitarian organisation which engages in both disaster relief and sustainable development programmes. It was established in 2003 as an independent non-governmental humanitarian charity responding to the human tragedies in Asia. Mercy Relief’s aid programme focuses on providing timely and effective assistance to disaster-stricken communities and has maintained the delivery of emergency aid within 72 hours from the point of appeal for assistance. 

In the past 12 years, Mercy Relief has disbursed over S$32 million in aid across 40 disaster relief and 53 sustainable development initiatives. Mercy Relief has impacted an aggregate of 2 million lives in 24 countries and areas, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, DPR Korea, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Japan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal,  Pakistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Yemen.

For more information, you may call us at 6514 6322 or email corporateaffairs@mercyrelief.org