A Gradual Transition from Disaster Response to Disaster Rehabilitation and Recovery: The Latest in Barangay Ban-ao, Baganga

Balay Mindanaw DR Update No. 3/2013
January 24 – February 12, 2013

 

Balay Mindanaw has for a while taken time to sit, reflect, consolidate and cherish both gains and challenges experienced for the past year 2012. It has as well planned out next steps for 2013, with the re-affirmed spirit to continue working with the local communities. This year-ender assessment and planning should have been done in Baguio City on 3-8 December with the kind hosting of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) had it not been for the coming of Typhoon Pablo.

This has become more meaningful with the presence of Punong Barangay Mera Ching and Role Adlawan, one of the core group members in Barangay Ban-ao; they, who also have not rested since Pablo came, have personally witnessed the entire process of the entire teams’ refreshing of wonderful and challenging moments encountered, the shared sentimental feeling while watching the videos on Pablo, and also the shared laughter during the organized joys among officers, staff and staffs’ family members.

As the interventions in Barangay Ban-ao, Baganga gradually graduate from disaster response to rehabilitation and recovery, we also have decided to stretch a little our sharing of updates from daily to weekly and now monthly in order to present a more complete portrait of the many different things however small, happening in the tent community and the barangay in general.

We wouldlike to share our deepest thanks and appreciation to the VOICE Network and the Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro City-St.John Vianney Theological Seminary Team with the leadership of Myrna Siose (our ever active mentor on volunteer work) for the kind and admirable filling in while we were away.

On tent coordination and management

Ninety-four (94) tents pitched in four sites of Ban-ao Tent Community are in good condition, and occupied by 94 households consisting of 558 individuals. (Please see attached profile containing family members names, age, gender, source of income, and health status (i.e., pregnant/lactating and condition/ailment at the time of assessment).

Tent Community (TC) Site No. of Households No. of Family Members
Site 1 22 213
Site 2 20 95
Site 3 32 138
Site 4 20 112
TOTAL 94 558

Table1

On the construction of community facilities

The construction of community latrines for the three sites (1, 3,4) are already completed while construction of 2 bathrooms and toilets for male and female are still ongoing in site 2. Each of the 4 sites now has their completed communal kitchens, with sufficient water supply regularly provided by DPWH.

All this construction work has been catered by skilled carpenters from Balay’s partner communities in Gingoog City and some from the barangay, who have also been provided with daily subsistence, at par to the present daily minimum wage in the area.

As cited in the previous reports, we have decided to establish a center cum warehouse in the barangay. This aimed at addressing at the immediate the lack of space for dialogue and wellness sessions, community meetings, including of the barangay’s running of its local affairs. Part of the center shall be temporarily allotted for Balay’s team who will journey with the community in doing resiliency building work.

Not less than 95% construction work has already been completed: with the amakan wall; installed water tanks (however still rain dependent as of this time); toilet construction and sleeping quarters, also 95% work to completion; and flooring, done.

On 4 February, the center has already been occupied. Then Principal’s Office that we used as temporary staff house and warehouse has already been turned over to the Elementary School of Ban-ao. We also would like to express our thanksgiving to the District Supervisor, Ma’am Monding Apostol; and Ma’am Venus Buhat, the Principal for the very kind accommodation and warm support the entire time we were there.

On psycho-social interventions and other community building activities

The team was able to facilitate medical check-ups with the presence of two officers/nurses from the Philippine Nurses Association (PNA). The experience then concluded with the commitment of PNA to sustain its community interventions to rehab and recovery period.

Play, singing and dancing, and thanksgiving therapy sessions have also been done especially with the children and young people inside the tent community every afternoon. With one Vianney graduate, a community mass has been held at the chapel near site 1; this when the regular priest was indisposed.

Leadership orientation sessions have also been facilitated with the different committees, site leaders of the tent community, including the Purok Leaders who, since Day 1, of our relief distribution work have already been tapped for easier and smooth facilitation of all the relief goods distribution.

De-briefing sessions have also been conducted with the squad of 67IB soldiers working with us in the barangay, and the elementary school teachers.

Mothers’ classes, especially with the pregnant and lactating have been done. The feeding session with the small children have also been continued guided by the daily menu provided by Dr. Cagape, our resident doctor who has continuously been providing his voluntary medical work not only for the barangay residents but also in the other barangays of Baganga and Cateel in Davao Oriental but also in the Municipality of Loreto, Agusan del Sur upon our request.

In collaboration with Ateneo de Davao University and the 67IB, a psychosocial training workshop was conducted for midwives, barangay health workers and nutrition scholars on January 26, 2013. The 65 participants from the 18 barangays of Baganga who attended the workshop were equipped with skills to give psychosocial processing to the members of their own communities.

(See this article for BalayMindanaw’s official documentation on this activity)

On relief goods distribution

Remaining food packs from CHILDREN’S HOUR were distributed to the households while other bottled waters and biscuits were distributed to children during their feeding sessions and during psychosocial activities.

On 27 January, we have had distribution of food packs and some non-food items to each of the 520 households both inside the Tent Community and those home-based. The items distributed consist of 5kilos rice, ½ kilo sugar, and packs of noodles, packs of milk supplement, 5 cans of beef loaf, and 18 coffee sachets. The other relief providers such as theDSWD and ICRC, have also been to the community for relief distribution.

On the distribution of shelter repair kits

A total of 414 shelter repair kits have been distributed to the barangay. This was completed with the active participation of the barangay council and Purok Leaders. PB Ching using vouchers facilitated the smooth distribution to the recipients. A session on proper management and distribution of relief goods and effective handling of tasks has also been given as a refresher to the leaders.

On the inspiring personal visit of The Johanniter, International Assistance (JUH)

The Regional Director for Southeast Asia in the person of Harald Einzmann was able to personally see and hear from the people of Barangay Ban-ao. After a short briefing at the Incident Command Post-Baganga, he slept in one of the tents, met the barangay council leaders and the other community leaders and residents, and made mention of the possibility of continuing its accompaniment to the barangay most particularly on livelihood development and other DRR-CCA related capacity building interventions.

JUH has also the opportunity of meeting the other people whom they have shared their support – with at least 100 families at the Blue Village (tent community) in Lingig, Surigao del Sur.

Related to this visit, at least 3 of the Balay Mindanaw colleagues were able to attend a Workshop on Strengthening Capacity of Disaster Risk Reduction and First Aid for Local NGO Partners in Southeast Asia in Jakarta, Indonesia on 3-10 February 2013. This is a joint undertaking among Aktion Deutschland Hilft Germany’s Relief Coalition, The Johanniter, and AWO International.

On continuing relief assistance in solidarity with two other local partners/areas

We also continue our sharing of relief goods from various donors and relief providers to around 100 families (with 390 family members) in Lingig, Surigaodel Sur. This we coursed through with the Municipal DSWD Officer. Just recently, we had a tour at the Blue Village (tent community), with HaraldEinzmann of The Johanniter.

With HEED Foundation, Incorporated (HFI) and the Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) with Fr. Ibanez (the assigned priest), we have extended in-kind support to at least 511 families consisting of 2,044 family members that came also from various donors.

Common to these two partner communities are the needs for more shelter repair kits, livelihood that is disaster adaptive or resilient, and more food and non-food support as the recipient families have yet to look for a new source of living.

 

FINANCIAL RESOURCE UPDATES

Our disaster response work for Typhoon Pablo-affected families, homes and communities consists of a total of 1,131 families consisting of not less than 4,644 family members distributed in three areas, namely Barangay Ban-ao, Baganga; Lingig, Surigao del Sur; and Sta. Josefa, Agusan del Sur.

For this period, we have received total donations/grants of P12, 028,361.35 and disbursed P11, 707, 177.50. We still have the remaining balance of P321, 177.50.

 

 

CONTINUING CHALLENGES

For the period under consideration, the following are cited as wanting other’s assistance:

  • More solar lanterns (7 for TC households; street lighting for protection of minors and women using the communal facilities; and for the puroks)
  • Food packs; with the consistent raining, the residents are being barred to work for a day’s living
  • Disaster-adaptive and resilient livelihood ventures
  • Rehabilitation of the schoolrooms
  • Acquisition of a permanent relocation site, for permanent housing
  • Continuing mental health and psycho-social support
  • Enhancing local capacities on DRR-CCA

The first phase of our resiliency building work has just commenced. The calling now is for a more comprehensive package of support for the continued “rebuilding back of lives, homes and communities”. This, we need to continue pouring in our resources – human, technical, material. There is no assurance yet for a more resilient Barangay Ban-ao after three months of our being with them. This we need to continue building up and the time is here and now! The missionfronting us now is how to help them incorporate DRR-CCA measures in their Barangay Development Plans and Budgets; how to contribute for the reviving of their critical environment (mangroves, etc.); and how to ensure as much as possible ZERO CASUALTY and LESS ECONOMIC DAMAGE and LOSS from the occurrence of next disasters.

To all partners and friends who have extended their support through us, and those who committed to continue with us up until the work for rehabilitation and recovery – our deepest thanks. Through our synergy building, this small victory in Barangay Ban-ao has happened.

In time of the celebration of this year’s Love Month, we would like to thank you for helping every member of BalayMindanaw constantly inspired to inspire peoples and communities.