The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said Thursday it has allotted P50 million for financial assistance to workers displaced by the magnitude 7 earthquake that recently hit Abra.
In a briefing Thursday, the regional director for DOLE-Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR), Nathaniel Lacambra, said the funds will be used under the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program.
Lacambra said so far, P25 million has been released to DOLE- CAR. The amount will be concentrated first on Abra, which is the area most affected by the earthquake, he said.
About P8 million of these funds have already been disbursed, he added.
So far, there are around 425 TUPAD beneficiaries, the DOLE official said.
Under the TUPAD program, beneficiaries will be temporarily employed from 10 to 90 days with a daily salary of P380, Lacambra said.
Aside from TUPAD, the DOLE-CAR also allotted P5 million for livelihood opportunities for the earthquake victims, he added.
Meanwhile, the European Union (EU) has earmarked 800,000 euros (about P45 million) to assist the victims affected by the recent earthquake that hit Abra and nearby areas in Northern Luzon.
The EU Delegation in Manila on Thursday said the emergency fund would provide safe drinking water and sanitation, hygiene, mental health and psychosocial support services, as well as education to the most vulnerable community in hard-hit areas.
“With this assistance, the European Union reaffirms its commitment and solidarity towards the victims of humanitarian disasters in the Philippines,” EU Delegation Chargé d’Affaires a.i. Ana Isabel Sánchez Ruiz said.
Apart from this, the EU’s Copernicus Emergency Management Service (CEMS) had also activated satellite imagery and the Copernicus Maps to assist relief agencies in their delivery of emergency assistance in Northern Luzon.
Copernicus is an EU program that monitors and forecasts the state of the environment on land, sea and in the atmosphere to support climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies. It also helps communities manage emergency situations efficiently.
The Philippines has also received Japan’s humanitarian assistance for the victims of the recent magnitude 7 earthquake that hit Abra and nearby provinces, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Thursday.
The agency said the donation, turned over by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) on Aug. 2, included camping tents, sleeping pads, generators, plastic sheets, and water containers.
“May this provision boost the relief efforts of Philippine authorities and ease the burden of communities devastated by the earthquake. Japan is in solidarity with you at this difficult time. Kasama nyo kami, Pilipinas (We are with you, Philippines),” said Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Kazuhiko Koshikawa in a separate statement.
Also present during the turnover ceremony were JICA Chief Representative Takema Sakamoto, DFA Undersecretary for Civilian Security and Consular Affairs Jesus Domingo, and DSWD Assistant Secretary for Special Projects Rommel Lopez.
Also on Thursday, state pension fund Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) said it will open its emergency loan program Friday to nearly 7,000 members and pensioners in Abra, the epicenter of the 7.3 magnitude earthquake that hit the country last July 27.
“We are encouraging our members and pensioners who have been affected by the earthquake to avail of the GSIS emergency loan,” GSIS president and general manager Wick Veloso said in response to the appeal of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to ensure that those who need help receive assistance from the government.