Australian ambassador visits Marawi tent city

MARAWI. Australian ambassador to the Philippines Amanda Gorely meets with some internally displaced persons (IDPs) who are beneficiaries of the Marawi Recovery project of the Community and Family Services International (CFSI). (Photo by Riz P. Sunio)

MARAWI CITY – Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Amanda Gorely visited the Sarimanok Tent City Friday, October 26, as part of the Australian government’s support for the Marawi Recovery Project (MRP) and announced that Australia will increase its support to P975 million (AUD 25 million) to the Marawi rehabilitation efforts.

Gorely graced the ceremonial livelihood assistance handover to beneficiaries of the Community and Family Services International (CFSI) in Sarimanok Tent City on Friday.

Gorely handed over a refrigerator, coconut grater, sewing machine, four motorcycles, and two motorcycle sidecars to CFSI MRP’s beneficiaries.

After the handover, Gorely had a focus group discussion with some beneficiaries of the site and observed the psychosocial activities in the child-friendly space (CFS) in the area.

In her speech, Gorely said that she had wanted to visit Marawi before going back to Australia and had strongly requested to go to the city.

“We recognize the need to provide immediate solutions on longer terms to keep people safe and provide the opportunities to disengaged families to recover their economic independence,” Gorely said.

She also commended the resilience of the evacuees and the MRP’s efforts in providing psychosocial support and protection activities to the internally displaced persons (IDPs).

A statement released by the Australian Embassy also announced that Australia is going to fund school feeding for 50,000 children and food assistance for families displaced from Marawi, education and child protection activities to support children affected by the conflict; and provide technical assistance to Task Force Bangon Marawi for recovery and reconstruction efforts.

CFSI is the grant manager of Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s P97.5-million (AUD 2.5 million) support for MRP, with the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) as a sub-grantee.

As of October 26, CFSI is supporting 134 families in the Sarimanok Tent City and has already distributed 100 livelihood support while 34 more are about to be given. About 439 individuals are also assisted to be issued with certificates of live birth.

Aside from the Sarimanok Tent City, MRP is also proving protection, livelihood, psychosocial support to evacuation, transitory and Kambalingan sites in Barangays Bito Buadi Itowa, Buadi Sacayo, Sagonsongan, Papandayan, and Guimba.

CFSI has so far identified 521 beneficiaries and has been able to distribute 299 livelihood support, while 222 are set to receive similar support.

MRP aims to promote protection, and the psychosocial and economic recovery of at least 4,000 households (20,000 persons) displaced by the Marawi Crisis. Part of CFSI’s economic recovery efforts are the livelihood support given to the most vulnerable and persons with special needs. (Riz P. Sunio)


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