One of the tasks that we have focused on in our assigned non-governmental organization, Freedom from Debt Coalition (FDC), is the Yolanda Relief and Rehabilitation Monitoring. We have all been aware that the typhoon Yolanda has made headlines for several days in numerous news articles because of the monumental devastation that it has caused in the eastern region of Visayas. Leaving a massive destruction in its wake, the typhoon has left thousands of people mourning for all kinds of losses, from the lost properties and basic necessities to the lost loved ones. Right after the onslaught of the typhoon was (and still is) the high time to extend a helping hand to those who were affected by what has been recorded as the deadliest typhoon so far in the Philippine history. Concerns were raised regarding the monitoring of Yolanda relief, rehabilitation, and recovery funds.
Being assigned to make a list of relief and rehabilitation aid sources, I have to admit that comparing and triangulating the data can be quite overwhelming. However, while I compare and triangulate the information from news articles, I truly felt the significance of monitoring whether all donations have reached the victims of the typhoon and that financial aid is not the only thing that should be monitored, we must also keep a close watch on non-cash donations.
In the Philippine society, graft and corruption have sadly been part of lives for decades and obviously, we cannot let these to continue on happening. So I think it is a big deal to start being vigilant. Monitoring both the local and foreign aid is also a crucial task and definitely, cannot be ignored. As Ms Rorie Fajardo of Citizen Action Network for Accountabiliy (CANA) has stated in the first public roundtable on citizen’s monitoring of financial aid for relief and recovery of victims of supertyphoon Yolanda, it is a moral obligation to help ensure things don’t go missing, get stolen, or wasted.
-Ma. Anjellica A. Pucyutan, 2012-38426