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Community News

Building through the Typhoon

Phillippines trade training Phillippines trade training

1 year on since Typhoon Haiyan and over 1000 Philippine nationals have now received trade training as part of the United Nations Development Program initiative.

phillipines-carpentary“Now, because of UNDP, not only am I able to help, [with the reconstruction effort] but I’m also able to earn a living through carpentry,” discussed local fisherman Raymond Rodrigo, from Cebu Province, one of the Visayas islands.

As like many, Rodrigo was a local fisherman trying to rebuild his family’s life after the devastating Hurricane that took 6340 lives, displaced over 4 million and created over US$800 million worth of damage in November 8th 2013.

In fact, in the fishing village where Raymond lives, ‘ninety percent of the boats in Daanbantayan municipality, on the northern tip of the island of Cebu, were destroyed, including the boat he shared with other fishermen in the area’, highlighted a UNDP representative.

Even Rodrigo’s house was destroyed in the hurricane, leaving him with no house, no work, and unfortunately no other marketable skills. “When our house was destroyed, we were all disheartened," he says." We were almost hopeless. There weren’t any jobs available”.

But in partnership with the provincial and central government, the UNDP trade training scheme provided training and skills in high demand because of the reconstruction efforts.

‘Rodrigo was among the first group of 100 graduates, to finish the 20 day course and complete three model shelters. Graduates of the training were also provided with a tool kit specific to their competency and a National Certificate that they can use for future employment’, highlighted UNDP.

The programme is expected to run until the end of 2014 and aims to train 1,500 people in 15 different municipalities affected by Typhoon Haiyan in carpentry, masonry, electrical wiring and plumbing to rebuild their communities. Each graduate will be provided with a tool kit and a National Certificate that they can use for future employment

UNDP was established in 1966 and partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in more than 170 countries and territories, they offer global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations. UNDP focus on helping countries build and share solutions in four main areas: Poverty Reduction and Achievement of the MDGs; Democratic Governance; Crisis Prevention and Recovery; Environment and Energy for Sustainable Development.

The US$18.7 million trade training scheme project which was supported with contributions from the governments of Australia, Ecuador, Japan, Kuwait, New Zealand, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the Philippines, as well as the Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA) and UNICEF, is now beginning to show progress.

‘Graduates from the UNDP programme have been hard at work helping to rebuild, repair, and rehabilitate their own homes, and eventually contribute to the rebuilding of the damaged community infrastructures in their area’, said UNDP.

"Six months since Typhoon Haiyan destroyed my home and work, I have been able to not only rebuild my home, but I have also been able to help build new homes for other survivors as well," said Rodrigo.

phillipines-carpentary2The project is not only helping rebuild the community for now, but improving life prospects for the ongoing future. “If it weren’t for UNDP, we wouldn’t have addressed the shortage of skilled workers," says Augusto Corro, mayor of Daanbantayan. "Looking back, we didn’t know how to deal with the demand considering the magnitude of the damage.”

In fact, like other graduates, Rodrigo will now receive priority when applying for government reconstruction jobs related to his training. This is excellent progress for communities, that only 1 year ago were left with nothing.

The benefits of this project are summed up nicely by UNDP Country Director Maurice Dewulf who concluded, “this effort is part of UNDP's programme to support recovery and resilience in the Visayas. By expanding income opportunities, we help people and their communities become less reliant on a single source of income and thereby more resilient against future shocks."

Last modified onFriday, 19 December 2014 23:45
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