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Mar 28, 2012

Disaster Response and Recovery in the Philippines

Distributing kits - photo courtesy of Merlin
Distributing kits - photo courtesy of Merlin

In December 2011, Tropical Storm Washi swept through the Philippines, killing over 1,000 people and displacing thousands more.  Especially hard hit were the areas of Cagayan de Oro and Illigan; and President Banigno Aquino III declared a state of national calamity. This month, GlobalGiving disbursed $2,611.50 each to three organizations responding to Tropical Storm Washi and other natural disasters in the Philippines.

The Disaster Management Response Program of De La Salle University collected and distributed relief supplies immediately after Hurricane Washi in December 2011. Relief supplies included clothes, blankets, water, noodles, biscuits, and toiletries, and were delivered through partnerships with organizations such as the Philippine Army and Navy.  These supplies are estimated to have reached 11,266 families in thirty communities. With alumni support, the school was also able to provide medical and dental services to evacuees. As time went on, the need for a psychosocial response to the floods became evident. During the month of January, members of De La Salle University’s disaster response team began undertaking needs assessments and will be implementing targeted psychosocial relief for survivors of Hurricane Washi.

Merlin, a medical relief organization, partnered with the Philippine organization Community and Family Services International (CFSI) to deliver hygiene kits and offer basic medical assistance in order to prevent the spread of disease after the storm. Items were purchased locally and relief kits were assembled in the Philippines before being delivered by local staff. These kits were distributed to about 2,000 families or 10,000 people. Merlin will continue to provide these kits for an additional month before winding down its storm relief activities.

Sibol Ng Agham At Teknolohiya Inc (SIBAT) is raising funds to rebuild a microhydro power plant on Rapu-Rapu Island that was damaged by two tropical storms in 2006. This plant will assist the numerous fishing communities living on the island by providing them with sustainable energy access. Upon further communication with the fishing communities, SIBAT found that fishermen currently travel long distances for ice blocks in order to keep their produce fresh. An ice-making facility is being incorporated into construction plans in order to provide a local source for ice: keeping fish fresher, longer, and increasing capacity for the island communities along the way.

 

Thank you for your support! Your donations through GlobalGiving’s Philippine Flood Relief Fund have assisted these organizations in providing medical assistance, emergency relief supplies, and long-term disaster relief and reconstruction services to families and communities in the Philippines affected by natural disasters. 

Working together - courtesy of De La Salle Univ
Working together - courtesy of De La Salle Univ
Unpacking kits - photo courtesy of Merlin
Unpacking kits - photo courtesy of Merlin
Dawn at Rapu-rapu island - SIBAT
Dawn at Rapu-rapu island - SIBAT
Mar 27, 2012

Messages for Japan

A message from a GlobalGiving donor for Japan
A message from a GlobalGiving donor for Japan

At the one year anniversary of Japan’s March 11 earthquake and tsunami, we asked you, the GlobalGiving community, to write messages of encouragement that Mari, our President and I would hand-deliver to the people of Japan.  We collected more than 135 messages on Facebook and via text message, and last week our staff came together to fold origami cranes, to translate your notes into Japanese, and to assemble cards for people affected by the tragedy. (See some beautiful photos of the messages here.) 

Yesterday, after 14 hours of flying, Mari and I arrived in Tokyo ready for a busy trip to visit our partners on the ground.  Over the next two weeks, we will be meeting with the organizations and people who you have helped support with your donations to ensure that your dollars are having maximum impact on the people and communities affected by the earthquake and tsunami.

We are excited to report that we will be visiting almost every project that received support through the GlobalGiving Japan Relief and Recovery Fund.  We’re committed to keeping you informed of how your money has been spent, so a full list of the grants that were given in the past year is below:

 

Total Funds Disbursed

We’re also excited to tell you about three new grants that were just recently approved:

1) The International Medical Crises Response Alliance (IMCRA) will receive a grant of $100,000 to support direct onsite medical operations in Tohoku. IMCRA currently provides medical resource information, seminars, clinical toolkits and web-based operational platforms to clinicians, administrators, and populations impacted by the earthquake, tsunami and radiation disasters of March 11, particularly in the areas of radiation biology, dentistry in disrupted environment, geriatrics, and infectious disease prophylaxis.

2) Peace Winds received $149,932 to help fishing communities in Minamisanriku. Miyagi Prefecture.  This grant will allow them to accelerate economic recovery and create jobs through support to Minamisanriku’s two Fishing Cooperatives and their 800 members.

3) Project YUI was approved for $100,000 to support the establishment of daycare centers for children in temporary shelters including hiring local nurses and mothers as daycare center staff;  creating a “mom's community" for the mothers living in the same complex; and expansion to up to 15 sites by 2013.

And that’s not all – generous donors like yourself have donated an additional $2.3 million in the last four months!  We will continue to disburse those gifts to Japanese organizations working on long-term recovery over the next few months.  We have a busy few weeks ahead of us, but we feel privileged to be able to see first-hand the great work that you’re helping to make a reality and we'll continue to report back to you. 

Thank you again for your support and we invite you to leave a comment on the project wall if you have questions you'd like for us to ask while we are in Japan.

Warm wishes,
Britt and the GlobalGiving team

Restoring livelihoods in Japan by Peace Winds
Restoring livelihoods in Japan by Peace Winds
Mar 12, 2012

Every Day is International Women's Day

Last Thursday was International Women’s Day.  For two weeks each year, world leaders come together to discuss the status of women and girls around the world. On March 2nd I joined the Commision on the Status of Women conversation at the UN, in support of the UN Secretary-General’s Every Woman Every Child initiative. The session, called “Keeping Promises and Measuring Results,” focused on accountability taking responsibility and reporting back on what governments and international organizations are doing upholding their commitments to improve the health and lives of women and girls.

Speaking from the floor, World YWCA General Secretary and Commissioner Nyaradzayi Gumbonzvanda made an impassioned plea that women must be a driver not beneficiary of that accountability. “We are tired of dying. We are tired of burying each other on the way to the clinic,” she said, urging greater health access for rural women.

Commemorating International Women’s Day means answering that call. It means pushing for education, safe pregnancy, safe labor and delivery, and healthy babies.  Every day.

As we raise our voices, we create more space for others to be heard—those who don’t have a voice. Yet.

What can you do to honor women every day? Take action.

  1. Go to millionmomschallenge.org/action and choose an action. Join the conversation and share a post from our blog or community — stories that highlight women across the globe.

  2. "Like" us on Facebook, and then share our page with your friends to spread the message of healthy outcomes for all mothers and babies around the world. You could post:
  3. Follow us on Twitter and tweet:

Because every day is International Women's Day.

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