As part of its overall response to Typhoon Odette, the United States government, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is providing an additional Php17.5 million (US$350,000) to support ecosystem and community recovery. This new funding brings the total U.S. government aid for Typhoon Odette relief and recovery efforts to nearly Php1.1 billion ($21.54 million).
This additional assistance will support local organizations in assessing the extent of damage to ecosystems and wildlife habitats, enhancing their resilience and recovery, and provide assistance to farmers, fisherfolk, and indigenous peoples whose livelihoods were destroyed by the typhoon.
Seven civil society organizations working in Siargao Island, Dinagat Islands, Palawan, Cebu, Bohol, Southern Leyte, and mainland Caraga will receive Php2.5 million each to implement projects that will avert long-term damage and mitigate environmental risks that could threaten the lives and the livelihoods of affected communities.
USAID will provide this funding to the Coastal Conservation and Education Foundation, Nagkakaisang Tribu ng Palawan, Palawan Biodiversity Conservation Advocates, Sentro Para sa Ikauunlad ng Katutubong Agham at Teknolohiya, South Pacific Integrated Area Development Foundation, Surigao Economic Development and Microfinance Foundation, and World Wide Fund for Nature Philippines.
Activities will focus on rehabilitating coastal and terrestrial ecosystems, supporting assessments to help local governments in their disaster risk reduction and management initiatives, rebuilding livelihoods through biodiversity-friendly enterprises, and providing incentives for local communities to participate in projects that will help rehabilitate their natural resource base.
“We will continue to support the Philippines as it recovers from the massive damage to infrastructure, livelihoods, and ecosystems from Typhoon Odette,” said USAID Philippines Mission Director Ryan Washburn.
“This additional assistance will help ensure that communities devastated by the typhoon not only receive immediate relief, but also long-term support that will have a significant impact on their lives and the environment on which they depend.”
The United States will continue to partner with the Philippines to respond to natural disasters and support Filipinos in their recovery efforts. Since 2010, USAID has provided more than Php17.5 billion ($342 million) in disaster relief and recovery aid, and boosted the disaster risk reduction capacity of over 100 cities and municipalities in the Philippines.
Photo credit: MANILA, U.S. Embassy in the Philippines – The Siargao Island Protected Landscape and Seascape three months after Typhoon Odette. The U.S. government, through USAID, is committed to helping accelerate rehabilitation efforts in the protected area known to exhibit wide biological diversity.