(January 27, 2014) Super typhoon Yolanda left a devastating aftermath in the infrastructure, shelter, agriculture, and livelihood primarily of Region 8 which includes Eastern Samar, Leyte, Ormoc and Tacloban. While short term relief became immediately available to the survivors, medium to long term problems need to be addressed especially restoration of maternal healthcare and reproductive health services among others.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humantarian Affairs reported that within the central typhoon zone, there are almost a hundred thousand pregnant women affected by super typhoon Yolanda. According to emergency risk management and humanitarian response of WHO, about 15% of these births can be expected to have complications. The disruption of access to reproductive health centers, services and supplies would also increase maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. Amidst the crisis there are also reports of rape, sexual assault, and unplanned pregnancies.
FriendlyCare Foundation Inc., as an institutional advocate of maternal health and family planning, has been commissioned by the UNFPA as the key Implementing Partner (IP) of the Yolanda Humanitarian Response Group. On behalf of the Family Planning Consortium, FriendlyCare which has been an efficient fund administrator of UNFPA also serves as the Convenor to other YHRG IPs including Save the Children, Merlin, Plan International, Y-Peer Pilipinas and FPOP Youth.
The YHRG covers a holistic project intervention on Maternal Health and Family Planning, Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health and Gender-Based Violence. The target area of operations focused on the central typhoon zone – Eastern Samar, Leyte, Tacloban and Ormoc.
The FriendlyCare Family Planning Team and local volunteers in designated areas are leading the operations, mobilization and logistics including deployment of OB-Gyne, nurses, nurse aids and volunteers for the Reproductive Health medical mission, Emergency Maternity Unit (HospiTainer) Maternity Tents.