‘Ursula’ aid in Panay reaches P26-M mark

The town of Balasan, Iloilo was among the badly hit areas by typhoon Ursula on Christmas Day of 2019. (Photo courtesy of Venture Rover Visual Arts)

By: Jennifer P. Rendon 

Assistance continues to pour for displaced families and communities two weeks after Typhoon Ursula ravaged Panay Island on Dec 25, 2019.

As of Jan. 7, 2020, the Department of Social Welfare and Development 6 (DSWD-6) said P26.11 million of assistance was already provided to residents of affected areas.

Around P22.13 million came from DSWD while assistance provided by different local government units (LGUs) and other agencies totalled P3.97 million.

May Rago-Castillo, DSWD-6 regional information officer, said the assistance were in the form of financial and food and non-food items.

“We continue to assist because there are still families who remain at the evacuation centers. More displaced families are also staying either with their relatives and friends,” she said.

Latest data showed that 932 families composed of 3,918 individuals are still staying in 103 evacuation centers all over Panay.

On the other hand, 1,953 families composed of 8,334 persons are staying outside of the evacuation centers.

Castillo said several localities continue to ask for augmentation given that the agency recorded 338,335 affected families composed of 1,461,165 individuals.

Four provinces – Capiz, Iloilo, Aklan, and Antique – recorded scores of affected barangays. The number grew as reports from areas came in.

Capiz topped the most number of affected villages at 383 with 139,241 families composed of 621,512 persons.

The severely affected areas in Capiz were Cuartero, Dao, Dumalag, Dumarao, Ivisan, Maayon, Mambusao, Panay, Panitan, Pilar, Pontevedra, President Roxas, Sapian, and Sigma, and Roxas City.

Iloilo province’s numbers are unchanged from the last DSWD report. There were 233 affected barangays in the towns of Ajuy, Balasan, Banate, Batad, Carles, Concepcion, Estancia, San Dionisio, San Enrique, San Rafael, and Sara; and Passi City.

Typhoon Ursula also affected 68,135 families in Iloilo.

All 17 towns in Aklan – Balete, Altavas, Banga, Batan, Buruanga, Ibajay, Kalibo, Lezo, Libacao, Madalag, Makato, Malay, Malinao, Nabas, New Washington, Numancia, and Tangalan – were also affected by the typhoon.

307 affected barangays in Numancia have yet to submit their reports on affected villages.

Antique is the least affected among four provinces with 81 barangays in the towns of Caluya, Libertad, Pandan, and Sebaste.

DSWD-6 also reported a big spike in the number of destroyed houses.

Over the weekend, it accounted 4,537 destroyed houses and 39,716 damaged houses.

But the recent data showed that there were 29,576 destroyed houses and 196,692 damaged houses.