Building Disaster Resistant Communities In Urban Centers

When Typhoon Haiyan ripped through the Philippines, it left more than 14 million people facing widespread homelessness, hunger, loss of income, lack of clean water and the threat of contagious diseases. The 2013 super storm, which claimed the lives of 6,300 people, came down with particular force on the island province of Leyte. 

Relief International, with funding from the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR), worked to make sure that 4,000 vulnerable families in Leyte’s Tacloban city would be better prepared for the next natural disaster. 

Focusing on the communities closest to the coast, a high-risk area for typhoons, storm surges and flooding, RI worked with local officials to create barangay (village)-level disaster risk reduction councils and to produce emergency plans and simulations.

The project also: 

  • Improved community emergency response skills by training school and local government officials.
  • Equipped neighborhoods with early warning systems to improve disaster response at the community level.
  • Conducted hazard mapping to identify potential disaster risks.
  • Promoted emergency preparedness activities and disaster response through awareness raising events and large-scale simulation exercises.