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Typhoon Haiyan: 7 ways your help can change lives

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In the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan, Oxfam and its partners are launching a major response to the emergency , with a goal of reaching 500,000 people. You can donate here to support our efforts.

But what will that response actually look like?

Right now, our teams of local and international staffers are already on the ground in the hard-hit provinces of Cebu, Leyte, and Samar, and will work with local organizations to provide the most urgent basics: clean water, food, and sanitation facilities.

After our initial assessments, Oxfam plans to do the following:

1. Distribute household water filters, which can clean dirty flood water and make it safe for drinking.

"Life saver" water purification boxes can turn dirty water into safe drinking water for those in need. These boxes are part of a shipment of more than 17 tons of Oxfam aid equipment now on its way to the Philippines. Photo: Bekki Frost / Oxfam
“Life saver” water purification boxes can turn dirty water into safe drinking water for those in need. These boxes are part of a shipment of more than 17 tons of Oxfam aid equipment now on its way to the Philippines. Photo: Bekki Frost / Oxfam

2. Distribute food, or provide cash where food is available locally, so families don’t go hungry.

3. Pay people to help clear debris, giving them a source of income and providing access to remote locations.

Damaged and destroyed houses on Bantayan Island, one of the areas hard hit by Typhoon Haiyan. Photo: Tata Abella-Bolo/Oxfam
Damaged and destroyed houses on Bantayan Island, one of the areas hard hit by Typhoon Haiyan. Photo: Tata Abella-Bolo/Oxfam

4. Install temporary toilets, which are quick and easy to erect and help prevent the spread of disease.

5. Provide plastic sheeting, to give people basic protection from the elements.

6. Help farming and fishing families get back on their feet with tools, seeds, and nets.

A fisherman in the Philippines with his boat in early 2013. Many people in coastal communities rely on fishing to earn a living. Photo: Simon Rawles/Oxfam
A fisherman in the Philippines with his boat in early 2013. Many Filipinos living in coastal communities rely on fishing to earn a living. Photo: Simon Rawles/Oxfam

7. As always, we will ensure all our activities consider the needs of women, who are often the most vulnerable people in emergency situations.

Roads and airports have been severely damaged, so getting to the most remote areas is extremely challenging. But the Oxfam program is underway and soon thousands of families will have access to essential aid. And as the scale of the disaster becomes clear, we will adapt our response to ensure we can best support people in desperate need.

Help Oxfam scale up our response: Donate to the Typhoon Haiyan Relief and Recovery Fund.

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