There are fears for the safety of more than 20 million children as the year’s most powerful storm bears down on the Philippines, warns Save the Children.
Typhoon Goni, the most powerful storm to hit the Philippines since Haiyan killed more than 6,300 people in 2013, made landfall on Sunday as a category-5 super typhoon.
Aid workers are gearing up to respond, as Atty. Alberto Muyot, CEO of Save the children Philippines, explains:
“This is the most powerful storm to approach the Philippines in seven years. It has developed into a super typhoon off the east coast of the main island of Luzon, home to Manila and 65 million people.
“We fear the humanitarian impact of this monster storm is expected to be very high. Children from poor households in coastal towns and remote provinces will bear the brunt of the typhoon's impact.
“In response we have mobilised a specialist team of aid workers. As soon as it is safe to do so they will be sent to the most impacted parts of Luzon.
“We know from our experience responding to typhoons and other disasters that it’s crucial we quickly distribute basic life-saving hygiene kits and items like plastic sheeting for shelter. Food and drinking water will be needed too.
“In addition to this, we have seven mobile health units ready for deployment.”
Atty. Alberto Muyot says it is vital that local and national government help to protect the most vulnerable including children, pregnant and lactating mothers from the impacts of the typhoon.
“The typhoon will bring violent winds and heavy rains that will cause storm surges and flooding in the coming days. Our community will need to rally to offer support to the most vulnerable people.
“We also have concerns for people who may have to shelter in cramped evacuation areas, exposing them to COVID19 and other life-threatening diseases, hunger and possible abuse and violence.”
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