Caritas Australia’s partners are on the ground monitoring the impact of Super Typhoon Goni, the world’s most powerful storm this year, which has struck the Philippines and will soon hit Vietnam only a week after Typhoon Quinta.
Typhoon Goni hit the eastern island province of Catanduanes from the Pacific, with winds of 225 kilometres per hour and gusts of 280kph.
The storm moved through heavily populated regions including the main island of Luzon, causing at least 10 deaths and leaving three people missing, before shifting towards Vietnam.
Over 390,000 people have fled their homes, including more than 345,000 people to evacuation centres, raising concerns about further spreading COVID-19.
The Philippines has had more than 383,000 cases of the virus, the second-highest number in South-East Asia.
The number of active cases in the country is 27,115, with 2,396 new cases confirmed on Sunday. Approximately 80 per cent of the country’s ventilators are in use.
Typhoon Goni has wreaked havoc on local communities still reeling from the impacts of Typhoon Quinta and COVID-19 with assessments still being made as to the scale of the devastation.
On October 23, Typhoon Quinta brought heavy rains and flooding to the Philippines, causing 22 deaths, 39 injuries and leaving 4 people missing. A further 176,532 families were affected by the typhoon across seven regions.
Typhoon Quinta damaged 52,689 houses, and caused 90 million pesos, equivalent to AUD $8,519,936.07, worth of infrastructure damage.
The National Director of Caritas Philippines, Bishop Colin Bagaforo, says “The typhoon will surely bring greater poverty to our communities, as they have also been battling against the effects of COVID-19. So with humility, we appeal for everyone’s sincere acts of kindness, generosity and compassion.”
Caritas Philippines is monitoring the progress of Typhoon Goni, and is working with local church organisations to respond. At this stage, challenges include infrastructure damage and shelter.
Due to the impact of COVID-19, support will be channelled through Caritas Australia’s church and NGO partners on the ground.
Caritas Australia’s thoughts and prayers are with the people of the Philippines as they face the challenges of Typhoons and COVID-19.
Donations can be made to Caritas Australia to provide support for emergencies like Super Typhoon Goni at caritas.org.au/learn/emergency-response/asia-emergency-appeal or by calling 1800 024 413 toll free.
Caritas Australia is a member of Caritas Internationalis, one of the world’s largest humanitarian networks in the world with 162 agencies operating in 200 countries and territories.
With thanks to Caritas Australia.