US Demonstrates Strong Support for Yolanda Recovery

US Demonstrates Strong Support for Yolanda Recovery
USAID Mission Director Gloria D. Steele, Palo Mayor Remedios Petilla, U.S. Ambassador Philip S. Goldberg, Leyte Vice Gov. Carlo Loreto, Board Member Bob Abellanosa & P&G Regional Sales Mngr. Manager Neil Camenforte w/ the sari-sari store beneficiaries.

For Immediate Release

Monday, October 20, 2014

United States Ambassador to the Philippines Philip S. Goldberg led the inauguration of 36 sari-sari stores and announced the establishment of a Php176-million ($4 million) credit facility for micro-entrepreneurs in areas devastated by Typhoon Yolanda on Monday (October 20). This project is part of the U.S. government’s support to the Philippines for Typhoon Yolanda recovery which totals nearly 6.3 billion Pesos ($143 million USD).

“The people of Leyte have shown the Philippines and the world great determination to rebuild your lives and bounce back from disaster. The U.S. government remains committed to help rebuild this region even better and stronger than it was before,” Ambassador Goldberg said.

The 36 stores are among 1,000 the U.S. government will construct in partnership with Coca-Cola and Procter & Gamble (P&G). This activity, implemented through the U.S. Embassy Manila’s United States Agency for International Development (USAID), seeks to help restore the livelihood of sari-sari owners and stabilize the supply and prices of basic consumer goods. Coca Cola and P&G are also providing initial inventory and training the beneficiaries on store management, basic accounting and cash flow.

To accelerate livelihood development in communities, the U.S. Government, in partnership with Philippine Business for Social Progress established the Micro Enterprise Disaster Assistance Fund for Resiliency or the MIDAS Fund.

This credit facility will enable eligible entrepreneurs from Yolanda-hit communities to borrow money to restart or expand their micro enterprises. This includes sari-sari stores, agricultural production, food processing, dressmaking, and bakeshops, among others. The loans will be granted at affordable interest rates and longer repayment periods.

The reconstruction and recovery efforts are part of the USAID Rebuild project. Under the project, the U.S. government is also providing support and training 3,000 farmers and 5,000 fishermen whose livelihoods were lost to the storm. This effort will be complemented by the construction of support infrastructure such as boat landings, trading centers, warehouses, and solar dryers.

Recovery efforts for education and health include construction of more than 165 classrooms and 10 health clinics that are typhoon and earthquake-resistant. The U.S. government is also providing support to the Office of the Presidential Assistant for Rehabilitation and Recovery to help facilitate their assistance to local government units in preparing reconstruction plans.

“This event, as well as the commemoration of the Leyte landing, is a testament to the resiliency and courage of those who refuse to allow crisis to deter them from the path of progress,” Ambassador Goldberg said. “The American people’s support remains as steadfast in the rehabilitation phase, as it has been since the first day of our emergency relief assistance. We will stand by you in building back your community and in strengthening your preparedness for future disasters.”

USAID Mission Director Gloria D. Steele, Leyte Vice Governor Carlos Loreto, Palo Municipal Mayor Remedios Petilla, Procter & Gamble regional sales manager Neil Camenforte and Coca-Cola Philippines regional sales manager Napoleon Locaylocay also attended the ceremonies.

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