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New boats for fishermen in the Philippines

We are supporting families in the Philippines  to regain their livelihoods
We are supporting families in the Philippines to regain their livelihoods

When Typhoon Haiyan hit coastal towns in the Philippines last year, hundreds of fishermen lost their boats. With no means to earn an income, many struggled to provide for their families. As part of our ongoing recovery efforts in the region, SOS Children has provided new boats for villagers in the fishing communities of Bislig and Magay.

Fishermen like Cesar and Richard, in the coastal town of Bislig in the Philippines, are relieved to have fishing boats and nets again. Now, they can return to their livelihood, rather than searching for work in town.

Last month, 18 fibreglass boats were handed over by SOS Children to 36 people living in the fishing villages of Bisleg and Magay. Typhoon Haiyan devastated both of these areas, and fishing communities lost their source of income. Each new boat is shared by a pair of fishermen, and come equipped with an engine and nets. 

Before Typhoon Haiyan, the fishing community used boats made of plywood that did not meet government standards. The new boats are made from eco-friendly fibreglass, which will last longer than the old boats. Through a partnership with the Agriculture Department, the fishermen will be trained in how to use and maintain the new boats.

Sustainable livelihoods

Group of children at the beach in the Philippnies TaclobanSumanta Kar, who has helped to organise SOS Children's emergency programme in the area, said: “Many donors and friends of the global SOS family have come together to participate in your efforts to rebuild your lives. This support will help you generate increased income.” The heads of both coastal villages expressed their gratitude to SOS Children for helping families revive lost livelihoods.

The new boats were part of our sustainable livelihoods programme, which is part of SOS Children's recovery efforts in the Philippines. In addition to providing 36 families with boats, we have helped families to regain their livelihoods by providing 29 ‘Pedicabs’, 44 livestock animals, 19 tools, and set-up support for 19 small businesses. So far, we have helped over 200 families in this way. SOS Children is working to make sure that every family in Bisleg and Magay has a secure and thriving livelihood.

Helping families to recover

Besides supporting sustainable livelihoods, we are helping children and families to rebuild their lives in several ways.

  • Many children lost their parents due to Typhoon Haiyan, and are now living with extended family; grandparents, aunties and uncles. We are supporting over 80 of these families so they can stay together and make sure each child receives all they need to flourish. 
  • We have handed out over 100 boxes of essential household items to families, to help them to reconstruct their household and livelihood. 
  • There remain three child-friendly spaces in Bisleg, Magayi and Palanog, where children have a safe place to learn and play. 

Our Children's Village in Tacloban suffered badly from Typhoon Haiyan. Although all SOS families were safe, buildings were damaged. Repair and reconstruction of the SOS Village is ongoing, with materials transported from Cebu. The nearby SOS School will be reconstructed once the school closes for the holidays.

As well as providing immediate relief after disaster strikes, we stay in communities to support their long-term recovery efforts. Help SOS Children be ready to help children and families in disasters.