International Rescue Committee (IRC)

Typhoon Haiyan: A Year of Recovery

A girl stands in front of her home on the island of Panay in Philippines
Photo: Tyler Jump/IRC

On Nov. 8, 2013, one of the strongest storms in recorded history, Typhoon Haiyan, struck the Philippines, disrupting the lives of more than 14 million people. More than 6,000 people lost their lives and 90 percent of homes in the hardest hit areas were damaged or destroyed.

The International Rescue Committee deployed its emergency response team immediately after the storm subsided. Working closely with aid agencies from the Philippines, the IRC provided emergency supplies and quickly began recovery and resiliency programs. In the year since, homes have been rebuilt, people are back to work and communities are more prepared for future storms.

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  • The IRC distributed water storage containers and other emergency supplies immediately after Typhoon Haiyan and continued to work in the most devastated areas for months.
  • The most vulnerable people affected by Typhoon Haiyan were given vouchers redeemable for construction materials at local stores and small cash grants to pay for labor in order to rebuild their homes.
  • Typhoon Haiyan had a disastrous impact on the fishing economy that provides most of the food and income for families on the island of Panay in the Visayas region. The IRC and its partner, Philippine Business for Social Progress, supplied motorized boats to fishermen, installed floating and sea-floor artificial reefs and newly planted mangroves to protect the shore from erosion and serve as a breeding ground for fish.
  • The IRC partnered with Ramon Aboitiz Foundation, Inc., to rebuild 20 daycare centers which will double as safe houses during future storms.
  • In addition, using our “Healing Classrooms” approach, the IRC trained 21 daycare teachers. “Healing Classrooms,” designed specifically for survivors of conflict and natural disasters, helps teachers develop an environment where students feel safe, cared for and engaged.

Typhoon Haiyan: Aid Worker Updates