Supporting pregnant and lactating women in typhoon-hit Catanduanes

Jessa, 24, who just gave birth to her 1-month old baby, Steven, recently received a maternity kit from United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in the Philippines and World Vision.

“I’m happy that mothers like me are prioritized in times like this,” she says.

The kit contains sanitary pads, baby cloth diapers and sleeping mat, among others.

According to Jessa, they evacuated hours before Typhoon Rolly (international name Goni) hit her hometown in Baras, Catanduanes.

“We felt the strength of the typhoon early morning, around 2. We heard the howling of the wind, its strength uprooting trees and unroofing houses,” Jessa recalls.

Typhoon Rolly left her village in total wreck, with most houses destroyed, trees and electric posts toppled. It also damaged health facilities in the province, disrupting services for pregnant and lactating women like Jessa. The province is without electricity until today.

“Some areas here were also flooded. In my house, the flood was almost five feet.”

Like most families after a typhoon, Jessa and her husband, Wilmer, a security guard in a mall at the town center, have nothing much left.

“He went back to work recently. He couldn’t report for work for several days due to the typhoon and the birth of our baby. Most families here have nothing now. We appreciate any kind of assistance given to us. What you gave is a big help for me and my baby, because most of our stuff were flooded,” Jessa shares.

Typhoon Rolly affected over 2 million people and caused  Php12.8 billion worth of structures and Php5 billion worth of crops. It also damaged 67 health facilities in Calabarzon and Bicol.