(Left) A resident of Tabuk City, Kalinga carrying a family food pack (FFP) distributed by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office (FO) as part of its ongoing Typhoon Ompong relief operations. (Right) A social worker from the DSWD FO CAR reaching out to assess the needs of the bereaved relative of one of the victims of the landslide incident in Itogon, Benguet.

(Left) A resident of Tabuk City, Kalinga carrying a family food pack (FFP) distributed by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office (FO) as part of its ongoing Typhoon Ompong relief operations.
(Right) A social worker from the DSWD FO CAR reaching out to assess the needs of the bereaved relative of one of the victims of the landslide incident in Itogon, Benguet.

“We are deeply saddened for the loss of lives and the devastation caused by the effects of ‘Ompong’ in the Cordillera Region. Our Field Office CAR will continue to assess the needs of the affected families, especially the grieving relatives, for the provision of additional assistance.”

This was the statement made by DSWD Secretary Gee Orogo during her visit to Baguio City recently together with President Rodrigo R. Duterte and other members of the cabinet who said that the Department has already reached out to the bereaved families of the landslide victims in Itogon, Benguet caused by Typhoon Ompong.

According to Sec. Orogo, the DSWD Field Office CAR has already sent a team composed of social workers for the conduct of stress debriefing sessions for the families and relatives of the victims as well as the survivors of the landslide.  The Department also provided family food packs (FFPs), medical kits, and family kits to the bereaved families.

“The Department is also currently facilitating the provision of financial and burial assistance to the bereaved families,” Sec. Orogo said.

Based on the report, the FO CAR has provided a total of 700 family food packs (FFPs) and other non-food items to the affected families in Itogon.

The FO also continues to provide relief aid to the residents of other affected municipalities in the region, including those in Kalinga.

Assistance to other areas affected by ‘Ompong’

As of 2 PM today, there are still 26,661 families or 100,457 persons who are staying inside evacuation centers (ECs) in Regions I, II, III, CALABARZON, and CAR.

To date, the DSWD has provided a total of ₱21,071,536.15 worth of assistance to all the affected families.

The Department, through its FOs, is continuously coordinating with the Local Government Units (LGUs) to assess and monitor the conditions of families affected by ‘Ompong’.

In Region II, the Department’s Rapid Emergency Telecommunications Team (RETT) has set up a call and internet service booth in the Municipality of Baggao, Cagayan where power and communication lines have been cut off since Friday last week after ‘Ompong’ toppled telecommunication lines.  Through this service, Baggao residents were able to communicate with their relatives.

Kenneth Santos, a resident of Barangay Immurung, Baggao is thankful for the free call service that he availed from the DSWD.

“Maraming salamat sa tulong ng DSWD. Kung hindi dahil sa inyo hindi ako makakatawag sa pamilya ko para humingi ng tulong sa kanila (I really thank the DSWD, as if it’s not for them, I wouldn’t be able to call my family to ask for help from them),” he said.

The DSWD-RETT used a state-of-the-art satellite telecommunications equipment for this service, which is also used by the Department in sending significant reports and updates relative to the relief efforts being done in the Region.

Meanwhile, the DSWD continues to provide relief aid to residents who are still staying in evacuation centers.  The Department’s Field Office I distributed food packs to affected families in Rosales, Pangasinan and Tagudin, Ilocos Sur; and delivered additional assistance to Laoag, Ilocos Norte and Santa, Ilocos Sur.

DSWD Field Office in Region III, on the other hand, is facilitating request of food packs for affected families in towns of Calumpit, Malolos, and San Miguel in Bulacan; Licab and Cabanatuan in Nueva Ecija; and Camiling in Tarlac.

The DSWD’s National Logistics Response Management Service (NLRMS) also delivered an additional 11,200 FFPs today to Field Office II to augment the resources of the FOs in Northern Luzon. ###