Communities affected by typhoon in Philippines look to rebuilding

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Workers distribute plastic sheets in a district of Tacloban City. © UNHCR/R.Rocamora

The needs of the people displaced by Typhoon Haiyan that hit the Philippines two weeks ago are shifting to rebuilding, according to the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR).

The agency says people are now asking for shelter material to start rebuilding their lives.

UNHCR Spokesperson Barbar Baloch says the agency's workers who visited some remote areas affected by the typhoon noticed that many communities are slowly getting back on their feet.

"Some shops are starting to re-open and commercial activities are resuming. In areas like Ormoc's barangay Tagatay where most of the houses were affected, people have started rebuilding makeshift shelters while repairing their houses. However, the situation in suburban and rural areas still remains difficult. To date, UNHCR has distributed relief items to some 23,000 survivors in Tacloban's San Jose and Bagacay areas, and in Tanauan as well." (29")

Barbar Bloch says UNHCR workers have also found that in remote areas of Guiuan where the typhoon first hit on 8 November logistical problems have hampered the smooth distribution of aid to the survivors.

He said the agency is working with the government of the Philippines and the World Food Programme (WFP) to address these gaps and ensure that all the affected groups can receive assistance equitably.

Donn Bobb, United Nations

Duration: 1’17″


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