MANILA, Philippines - Schools in the Philippines impacted by Typhoon Odette are receiving plenty of support from across the nation and from international organizations.
The Department of Education (DepEd) has delivered relief efforts and conducted psychosocial interventions to all Typhoon Odette-hit schools and field offices in affected provinces.
"We have deployed personnel to facilitate the processing and transport of donations according to our assessment. We assure our stakeholders that immediate funding for interventions in the affected regions shall be delivered as soon as possible," Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones said Friday.
To obtain data on infrastructure and non-infrastructure damages in affected regions, divisions, and schools, the Department, through the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service (DRRMS), activated the Rapid Assessment of Damages Report (RADaR).
According to DRRMS, DepEd Central Office facilitated the downloading of Php 3.6M for clean-up and minor repairs. Support funds amounting to Php 10.2M were also allocated for response interventions to affected regions. The support funds can be used for the procurement of learners' and teachers' kits with hygiene items, provision of psychological first aid, and emergency school feeding programs.
DepEd, in coordination with the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) Logistic Cluster, also facilitated the transport of in-kind donations from many quarters including Colgate-Palmolive Philippines, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), United Laboratories, Inc. (UNILAB), the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO), SDO Pasig City, and Save More.
As of the latest data 11 regions have been affected by the onslaught on Typhoon Odette, including 121 divisions, and 29,671 schools. More than 12 million students have been impacted.
Meanwhile, DepEd Region V (Bicol), VI (Western Visayas), VII (Central Visayas), VIII (Eastern Visayas), and XIII (CARAGA) were identified as hard-hit regions. These regional offices have initiated efforts to assist in their respective areas by conducting psychological first aid sessions and identifying schools for possible evacuations, among others.
Hard-hit regions have also facilitated the processing and transport of donations from national government agencies, other regions, and partners to reach the families of affected personnel and learners.
Secretary Briones thanked the partners and SDOs who handed their in-kind donations such as school supplies and groceries to aid the needs of the learners, teachers, and non-teaching personnel in affected areas.
"On behalf of the Department, we thank our partners and SDOs who generously extended their services and resources to address the needs of our stakeholders, schools, and offices to ensure learning continuity," Briones said Friday.