November 16, 2013
Relief Efforts Gain Momentum in Philippines
The pace of international relief is gaining momentum in the Philippines where aid workers have been struggling to reach typhoon victims in hard-hit remote areas.
The first British air force aid flight arrived in Cebu on Saturday. The northern part of the island took a direct hit from Typhoon Haiyan.
Also, the head of the European Community Humanitarian office, Kristalina Georgieva, says aid from the European Union will exceed $25 million dollars.
On Friday, helicopters from the U.S. aircraft carrier USS George Washington began flying food, water and medical supplies to remote villages.
Meanwhile, Filipino-Americans are among those who have responded generously to appeals for help.
In a VOA interview, Philippines immigrant Teresa Descalzota said her five siblings in Iloilo province were struggling in the storm's aftermath. Descalzota is taking part in a relief effort at a Washington church to gather food and clothing for survivors.
The typhoon, which hit early on November 8, killed more than 3,600 people and left about half million homeless. The death toll is expected to rise as many people are missing.
While food and water are now available to many Filipinos in the central part of the country, hundreds of thousands, and possibly millions of others are still homeless and without water, food and power, having received little or no assistance.
The flow of relief supplies has been hampered by wrecked roadways and gasoline shortages.