The Philippines on Wednesday expressed gratitude to the government of Taiwan for its numerous donations to help the victims of the typhoon “Odette” in the Visayas and Mindanao.
In a text message to Daily Tribune, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), the main agency providing immediate assistance to the typhoon victims, said it is “thankful” for the generosity of the neighboring territory.
“The DSWD Secretary (Rolando Joselito Bautista) is thankful for the acts of generosity of the Taiwanese government and its various associations through the Taiwan Economic and Cultural Office (TECO) and Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO),” DSWD spokesperson Irene Dumlao said.
Dumlao said the humanitarian and financial assistance given by the government of Taiwan will be used to augment the resources of the government in its rehabilitation efforts for Odette-affected families and individuals.
“These will augment the resources of the government in addressing the specific needs of those affected by Odette,” she added.
During the last week of December last year, the TECO became busy handing out donations to its counterpart — MECO headed by its Chairman Wilfredo B. Fernandez.
Two shipments of relief goods worth $50,000, composed of bottled water, canned tuna, instant noodles, food rations, tents, cookies, and water filters arrived in the country.
The donations include 350 boxes of water, 206 boxes of instant noodles, 18 boxes of canned tuna, 225 boxes of cookies, 46 boxes of tents, 17 boxes of water filters, and 835 boxes of food rations.
These donations arrived at General Benito Ebuen Air Base in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu through Taiwan’s C-130 Aircraft.
The ceremonial turnover was also attended by officials from the Office of Civil Defense and the Philippine Air Force.
During New Year’s Eve, around 1,666 boxes of food and non-food items from the Republic of China were given to typhoon-stricken Local Government Units in the Central Visayas.
The Province of Bohol received a total of 117 boxes of drinking water, 69 boxes of noodles, 33 boxes of biscuits, 3 boxes of water filters, 220 boxes of food rations, 12 boxes of tents, and 35 boxes of cookies.
Negros Oriental received 116 boxes of drinking water, 68 boxes of noodles, 33 boxes of biscuits, 3 boxes of water filters, 180 boxes of food rations, 10 boxes of tents, and 24 boxes of cookies.
The province of Cebu received 17 boxes of drinking water, 69 boxes of noodles, 34 boxes of biscuits, 18 boxes of canned tuna, three boxes of water filters, 200 boxes of food rations, 10 boxes of tents, and 25 boxes of cookies.
Meanwhile, highly urbanized cities such as Cebu City received four boxes of tents, 3 boxes of water filters, 70 boxes of tents, 3 boxes of water filters, 70 boxes of food rations, and 15 boxes of cookies.
Mandaue City was given three boxes of tents, two boxes of water filters, 60 boxes of food rations, and 15 boxes of cookies.
The Lapu-Lapu City received the following quantities: seven boxes of tents, three boxes of water filters, 70 boxes of food rations, and 15 boxes of cookies.
The donated food and non-food items were on top of the $500,000 or roughly P25 million initial donation of the government of the Taiwan (Republic of China) to help the Philippine government augment its relief and rehabilitation drive in the regions severely battered by the typhoon.
Several Taiwanese humanitarian and private organizations such the Taiwan Association Inc. Philippines, and Love From Koten Foundation have also shown genuine care to the Filipino people after they shelled out financial assistance worth P4.7 million.
Days after, the Philippines received more aid from Taiwan through Taiwanese Compatriot Association in Philippines as it donated P2 million financial assistance to the DSWD.
by Jom Garner