Home Environment Millions in Aid Flows to Affected Philippine Regions as El Niño Persists

Millions in Aid Flows to Affected Philippine Regions as El Niño Persists

Over P541 Million in Aid for El Niño Affected Philippine Regions

MANILA – As a punishing El Niño drought scorches regions across the Philippines, much-needed aid is reaching communities grappling with parched conditions. The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council announced on Thursday that ten heavily impacted regions have received approximately PHP541 million ($10 million) in relief supplies.

The aid, consisting of essential items like food packs, rice, fuel, roofing sheets, generators, and hygiene kits, has been distributed to Cagayan Valley, Mimaropa, Bicol, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Eastern Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Soccsksargen, the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, and the Cordillera Administrative Region.

The El Niño phenomenon, characterized by prolonged dry spells and searing temperatures, remains active in the country, with meteorologists predicting its persistence until May 2024. Its effects have been far-reaching, with at least 131 cities and municipalities across the Philippines declaring a state of calamity due to drought conditions.

Recognizing the heightened risk of fires during these arid times, the El Niño Task Force, chaired by Defense Secretary Gilberto Teodoro Jr., has directed the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) to ensure the fire safety of public hospitals and health facilities. Teodoro emphasized the importance of maintaining a safe environment for patients, medical professionals, and workers seeking or providing essential healthcare services.

As the El Niño crisis unfolds, aid organizations and government agencies remain vigilant, mobilizing resources to support communities facing water scarcity, crop failures, and other challenges posed by the prolonged dry spell. Continued relief efforts and proactive measures are crucial to mitigating the impact of this natural phenomenon on the lives and livelihoods of Filipinos nationwide.