Typhoon Haiyan UN Relief Needs $301million

Big disasters need big money to help find survivors and to relieve them from suffering, so although the $301million figure the UN is appealing for seems like a lot of money, it might not go far enough to provide water, food, medicine, resources and shelter for the survivors of Typhoon Haiyan that swept through the Philippines over the weekend.

Around 10,000 are feared dead, although the country’s President, Benigno Aquino, believes that figure is inflated and that only around 2,000 to 2,500 of his citizens have been killed by the tropical cyclone. At least 9.8 million have been affected in one way or another by the natural disaster, with approximately 660,000 of them displaced from their homes. There are 394,494 people currently in the 1,316 temporary evacuation centres that have been established.

The crisis is “at the very top” of the UN’s agenda according to the organisation’s Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Valerie Amos. “It’s been extremely difficult even to get a sense of what the immediate needs are because it’s been very difficult to get to some of the areas affected," Amos said.

Power is down in a lot of the country’s provinces, but it has been partly restored in the majority of the country. Communications are down but are improving hour by hour. Even though things are improving, aid agencies are struggling to get medicine and food through to the displaced citizens of the Philippines.

PHOTO GALLERY: Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines: the Aftermaths

Over a dozen governments are giving funding, personnel and resources to help the aid effort, which has been welcomed by the country. Philippines presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda said “we are very thankful for the countries who have pledged assistance to us.” Whether the $301million price tag the UN has set will be achieved and whether it will be enough to provide the aid the country needs remains to be seen.

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