By Charissa Luci-Atienza
The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has provided P3.91 million in assistance to the families in Batangas and Cavite affected by Taal Volcano’s eruption last Sunday.
In a nine-page report on Wednesday, DSWD-Disaster Response Operations and Monitoring Information Center (DROMIC) said P3.91 million was provided by DSWD to the affected families in both provinces.
Of the amount, P3.73 million was given to Batangas, benefitting cities of Batangas and Tanauan, and seven municipalities, while P181,781.48 was provided to Alfonso, Cavite.
The DSWD-DROMIC noted that the DSWD Central Office (CO), Field Offices (FOs), and Natural Resource Operations Center (NROC) have stockpiles and standby funds amounting to P916.83 million.
It said the DSWD-CO and FOs have P250.13 million in standby funds. “Of the said amount, P215.14 million is the available Quick Response Fund (QRF) in the CO.”
However, in a radio interview, DSWD Secretary Rolando Bautista said they have a P6 billion standby fund for the calamity victims.
“Actually, we have standby funds. Our Field Office, we have standby [fund] more or less P6 billion and in Central Office, we have a fund, more than P100 million, intended solely for the needs of those affected by the disaster,” he said.
Bautista said a regional National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) was established to ensure better coordination among the agencies extending assistance to the Taal Volcano eruption victims.
“The President ordered us to ensure there will be a continuous delivery of services, especially in the distribution of food packs and non-food items. He also wanted us to ensure that the health condition of the evacuees is good and the place where they stay is organized,” he said.
He said they closely coordinated with the local government units (LGUs) and local chief executives, as they knew the priority areas where the food packs and non-food items should be distributed.
According to DSWD-DROMIC, they have stockpiles of 188,594 food packs amounting to P71.88 million, and available food and non-food items amounting to P594.81 million.
As of 6 a.m. of Jan. 15, the number of families and persons affected by the Taal Volcano eruption stood at 12,059 families or 53,187 persons.
In its report last Jan. 13, there were 4,960 families or 21,937 persons from Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon) region who were affected by the volcanic eruption.
The DSWD-DROMIC also reported that there are 10,000 families or 43,681 persons taking temporary shelter in 217 evacuation centers in Calabarzon.