The Department of Education (DepEd) released partial data as of December 17. According to the numbers, 15,960,185 students were exposed to “Odette” as were 35,698 schools. It’s spread out to 12 regions that had 156 divisions exposed.
National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) and President Duterte had a meeting recently. This is where DepEd Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Service (DRRMS) Director Ronilda Co shared that the impact of “Odette” on the education sector is still under close monitoring.
“We have funds on standby for assistance,” she said in a mix of English and Tagalog, “such as teachers’ kits, learners kits and even psychological first aid should the need arise.”
Co pointed out that even before the typhoon, the agency already gave directives for the affected regions to be prepared.
“We reiterated preparedness protocols and measures … in over 35,000 exposed schools,” she said in Tagalog and English, “as well as the children and personnel who were there when typhoon Odette arrived.”
Another government agency is also taking steps towards handling the effects of “Odette”: the Social Security System (SSS). Pensioners and private-sector members alike who were affected can get calamity loan assistance packages.
A circular was published where SSS president and chief executive Aurora Cruz Ignacio stated that the pension fund, which is state-run, will accept applications for three types of assistance from “Odette” victims starting Jan. 14 of next year.
There is a three-month advance pension and loan program for social security and employees’ compensation (EC) pensioners, offered until April 13, 2022. On the other hand, the direct house repair and improvement loans will be available for a year up to January 13, 2023.
Photo: Project LUPAD