As Tropical Storm ‘Vinta’ continues to affect several regions in the southern part of the Philippines, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), in coordination with concerned local government units, temporarily transferred internally displaced persons (IDPs) affected by the Marawi siege in school buildings in Lanao del Norte.

Based on the latest report from the DSWD Field Office (FO) X, 99 IDPs from Balono Evacuation Center were transferred to Baloi Central School due to the damage caused by the strong winds brought by ‘Vinta’ to the tents of the IDPs.

In Momongan Learning Center, 35 IDPs were transferred to Pacalundo Elementary School due to flooding, while families staying in tents at Abdulhamid Evacuation Center were transferred to the Abdulhamid Madrasah for safety.

Meanwhile in Pantar, Lanao del Norte, IDPs staying in three damaged tents were immediately secured inside the multi-purpose hall within Pantar Tent City.

Non-food items like malongs, mats and laminated sacks were also distributed to the IDPs.

As of the latest report from the DSWD Disaster Response Assistance and Management Bureau (DReAMB), there are 70,454 families or 320,180 persons are affected in 569 barangays in Regions MMAROPA, VII, IX, X, XI, XII, ARMM and CARAGA, of which, 13,927 families or 59,851 persons are currently staying inside 213 evacuation centers in the said regions.

The Department already extended assistance worth P4,989,110.00 while P647,467.00 were provided by concerned local government units (LGUs).

“Disaster Response Assistance and Management Units of the DSWD in the affected areas are continuously monitoring the situation on the grounds with their local government counterparts,” said DSWD Officer-in-Charge (OIC) Emmanuel A. Leyco.

The DSWD OIC also encourages the public to volunteer to repack relief goods at the National Resource Operations Center (NROC).

“We are now calling for public assistance to help in the repacking of relief goods for immediate replenishment of goods to be distributed to locals affected by Tropical Depression ‘Urduja’, Tropical Storm ‘Vinta, and the Marawi siege,” he added.

“Let us continue to keep in our minds and in our hearts the spirit of Bayanihan, not only during this season, but in our everyday lives. May our hearts be filled with compassion to serve the Filipino people, especially the poor, marginalized, homeless and displaced victims of disasters,” said DSWD OIC Leyco. ###