(Manila, Philippines: 11 October 2018): Ursula Mueller, the United Nations deputy humanitarian chief, today urged the international community to continue humanitarian support for Marawi and to back Government-led recovery efforts as she wrapped up a three-day mission in the Philippines.
Upon arrival in Mindanao on 9 October, Ms. Mueller met with internally displaced people (IDPs) affected by the Marawi conflict, humanitarian partners and local authorities and highlighted the need for continued support to reduce vulnerability and to build momentum towards their long-term recovery.
She also met implementing partners of programmes funded by the UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) and other humanitarian programmes. CERF has provided nearly US$7.5 million for life-saving interventions for people displaced by the Marawi conflict.
Ms. Mueller reiterated the support of the United Nations and its partners to the Government’s recovery plan as well as its efforts to seek solutions for those who remain displaced and highly vulnerable.
“To see is to understand the challenge,” Ms. Mueller said. “I was struck by my conversations with displaced women living in the Sarimanok temporary shelters. As their displacement continues, they want their children to have access to education. Sustained humanitarian assistance is needed. There is a lot of hope and opportunity in Marawi, and we need to keep those hopes alive.”
Ms. Mueller also met with in-country UN agencies, local and international humanitarian partners, including donors. She commended the humanitarian community for its inclusive approach to coordination and partnerships.
During meetings with disaster management actors, Ms. Mueller commended the Government for its disaster risk reduction, preparedness and mitigation efforts that have saved lives, particularly during the recent Typhoon Mangkhut response. She noted the innovative use of cash-based interventions in emergency response, and during the recovery phase.
Ms. Mueller also met with private sector partners and expressed her gratitude for their strong commitment to support humanitarian response efforts. She commended the Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation, a disaster management network composed of private sector organizations, which plays an active role within the Connecting Business Initiative programme, on their recently inaugurated national emergency operations centre which will serve as a hub to coordinate the private sector’s response to disasters.
“Partnership needs sustained investment,” she said. “There is a lot of innovation in the Philippines. I’m very impressed by the strong coordination among humanitarian organizations, donors, the public and private sector, and focus on keeping vulnerable people at the centre of response efforts in the Philippines.”
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