Sovereign Military Hospitaller
Order of St John of Jerusalem of
Rhodes and of Malta

Tropical Storm in the Philippines: Number of people affected doubled since Monday


According to the most recent reports by the Philippine disaster management authorities, the number of people affected by Friday’s flash floods has doubled since Monday. More than 63,000 families, or 338,000 people, have lost their homes and belongings due to the storm waters. More than 280,000 residents have taken shelter in evacuation centres in the disaster area, and more than 1,500 people are injured. The death toll now nears 1,000.

The Philippine association of the Order of Malta, which is conducting relief activities in the region in coordination with Malteser International, are sending nearly two tons of food, medicines and supplies to the disaster area around Cagayan de Oro and Iligan. Four volunteer aid workers of the association’s auxiliary corps will arrive in Cagayan tomorrow.

“My wife lost some relatives in Iligan, in the Lanao del Norte province. Many other people remain missing,” reports Ramon Pietro, for the Order of Malta. “We have been coordinating our help with many people. We are sending supplies such as blankets, towels, hospital gloves, sleeping mats and soap to our partner hospital run by the Sisters of Mercy in Iligan and to St. Paul’s Hospital in Cagayan de Oro.”

The Order of Malta’s worldwide relief organisation, Malteser International has workedin the Philippines since Typhoon Ketsana in 2009, providing trainings in emergency relief management and helping set up projects in disaster risk reduction, since the island state is constantly afflicted by natural disasters.

The flash floods were caused by tropical storm Washi, which caught hundreds of families on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao unaware in the middle of the night last Friday.