Walking with communities affected by Typhoon Haiyan

This content is in English.

Aldrin Lauding remembers the day he lost his home to Typhoon Haiyan like it was yesterday. The storm devastated his entire barangay (village) of Lao. Though he and his partner and two children were safe, everything they had was gone. As a broom maker earning only 250 pesos ($5.34 USD) a day – and only for the part of the year when broom grass was available – Mr. Lauding had no savings to rebuild on his own.

ACT Alliance member LWR began its Haiyan emergency response in Barangay Lao in November 2013 with shelter repair kits, a cash-for-work program clearing debris, and a water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) program to meet the immediate needs of Mr. Lauding and others in his situation, like Alycia Suganob. Mrs. Suganob was able to quickly rebuild her home after it was destroyed in Haiyan using the shelter repair kit she received from LWR. Her rare, two-story home is now the gem of the barangay with its beautiful garden.

Both Mrs. Suganob and Mr. Lauding were also able to “build back better” with the construction of latrines in their new homes through LWR’s WASH program. LWR trained Mr. Lauding and others on how to construct the locally sourced cement toilet bowls for the latrines it was building in nearly every home in the barangay. He and his fellow craftsmen make five cement toilets in a day, earning them each 750 pesos ($16 USD) per day, which is significant additional income to aid in their families’ long-term recoveries.

This fall, one of LWR’s WASH program’s focus barangays, Barangay Naungen, won first place among 110 barangays in Ormoc City and third place in the region of Samar and Leyte for sanitation and solid waste management. Prior to LWR’s programming, sanitation and solid waste management were not consistently practiced in Barangay Naungen. LWR built latrines as well as several Material Recovery Facilities (MRF) to collect the community’s solid waste. It also provided hygiene kits and trainings on daily hygiene practices, solid waste management, and latrine maintenance.

LWR has reached more than 12,000 people in livelihood recovery projects, nearly 14,000 with its WASH projects, and nearly 29,000 with its shelter projects. LWR will continue walking with communities affected by Haiyan through at least April 2016.

LWR actively supported and represented the ACT Alliance from the earliest days of the emergency. As an original member of the ACT Philippines Forum, LWR was instrumental in supporting setup of the ACT Coordination Center, participating in coordination meetings, hosting ACT member visits, providing information for combined Sit Reps, and drafting the ACT Appeal. LWR also worked closely with non-implementing ACT members to host seconded staff. DanChurchAid  provided a cash transfer adviser, Church of Sweden provided a psycho-social adviser, and Church World Service provided quality and accountability trainers. The ACT Alliance has been an important and valuable asset to the overall Haiyan response.