|Manila, PHILIPPINES (August 7, 2012) — A mass evacuation is under way in parts of the Philippines as torrential rain and floods threaten to engulf the capital city, Manila. World Vision is poised to respond as hundreds of thousands leave their homes in what could be the city’s worst inundation since Tropical Storm Ketsana struck three years ago, leaving the whole city and nearby provinces underwater.|
Listen as Anthony Valenzuela, emergency communications with World Vision in Manila, describes the situation caused by flooding there (MP3).
According to World Vision's humanitarian and emergency affairs director, Bebeth Tiu, World Vision has mobilized its emergency response team to assess the situation and coordinate with government agencies to conduct a coordinated response as quickly as possible.
Disaster authorities estimate that more than a million people are affected and around 250,000 displaced. The number is set to increase by the hour as pelting rains and raging floods are expected to engulf the metropolis and neighboring provinces in the next two days.
Erwin’s family is just one of the hundreds of families that are helplessly trapped in their homes due to the flooding. Thousands more are expected to evacuate within the day.
Major roads are impassable. However, World Vision's disaster relief manager, Reynor Imperial, announced that as soon as the flood significantly recedes, the response teams will head out to visit the affected areas of Malabon, Manila, Cavite and Zambales.
World Vision staff member Sally Gines said: “I wasn’t able to leave our house because I was scared of the floods. Now we don’t have electricity here in our place as we prepare our lugaw (porridge) for 20 displaced families who have joined us after fleeing their homes due to rising floods.”
In Zambales, residents from the village of Bunhi have evacuated with the help of rescuers from the local government.
"People in the Cabangan village, one of World Vision's program areas, cry for help while drenched by the cold rain,” shares World Vision programme officer Matthew Santos. Other flooded areas at critical level include Botolan, Baquilan, Bangan, Danac Bunga, Paco, Nacolcol, Capayawan, and Taugtog. Roads are rendered impassable.
In 2009, heavy rains brought by Tropical Storm Ketsana pounded the city and caused massive flooding in metro Manila and provinces in Northern Luzon.
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About World Vision:World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families, and their communities worldwide reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. We serve the world's poor — regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. For more information on their efforts, visit WorldVision.org/press or follow them on Twitter at @WorldVisionNews