The Australian government has now extended some P35-million worth of typhoon response assistance to the Philippines since the Typhoons Rolly and Ulysses hit the country.
Australian envoy to Manila, Ambassador Steven Robinson said on Tuesday what really is important is not the amount but “the principle that when the Philippines is in difficulty, Australia will stand by with the Philippines– always has, and always will.”
He said before “Rolly.” Canberra had prepositioned “a whole range of supplies” in the Philippines in partnership with the government and the Red Cross.
“So within a very short time. about 48 hours maybe even less of Typhoon Rolly hitting, we were able to release about 6 and half million pesos worth of prepositioned supplies,” he said.
After the United Nations appealed for Typhoon Rolly assistance, which was eventually expanded for “Ulysses”-affected areas, Canberra announced around PHP28 million more for the Philippine disaster response.
Robinson said the additional aid will be coursed through the UN World Food Programme to help affected communities provide for their families and repair their homes.
“We will also support health services and counseling for vulnerable women and girls through local partners,” he said in a prior tweet.
Robinson visited Albay together with UN Resident Coordinator in the Philippines, Gustavo González last November 8, a week after Typhoon Rolly’s torrential rains triggered massive flooding in the province.
“We went by car down to the most affected area of Tiwi, which was just extraordinary. I’ve never seen a typhoon hit before and it was really heart-wrenching,” he said.
On November 9, the envoy said González launched an appeal for the Typhoon Rolly, which has now been broadened to include aid response for Typhoon Ulysses.