ASFA’s Livelihood Committee assisted the CEC staff in generating ideas to help solve livelihood problems in their community. (Eastern Visayas)


Photo from Eastern Visayas Team: Agricultural engineer Ronald Garcia of AGHAM (Advocates of Science and Technology for the People) and members of ASFA’s Livelihood Committee dug soil samples for analysis to determine soil composition and fertility, among



About the CEC's Yolanda Rehabilitation Project

On November 8, 2013, Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) hit the Philippines, leaving more than 6,000 dead and destroying billions worth of livelihood and property. Most affected by this super typhoon were provinces considered to be some of the poorest in the country; the hardest-hit regions, Western Visayas and Eastern Visayas, have provincial poverty incidences ranging from 25 to 63.7.

Government and various institutions have hailed Build Back Better as the core principle of the rehabilitation and recovery process, citing success stories in other countries where it has been implemented. Reports from the ground, however, belie the optimism surrounding Build Back Better. In October 2014, almost a year after Yolanda, it was estimated that only 1 percent of the target beneficiaries of permanent housing have been served, while the No-Build Zone policy continue to threaten and displace families living in coastal areas. The noticeable influx of commercial capital into Yolanda-stricken areas also highlight the government’s openness towards business interests, while support for agriculture and fisheries that were heavily damaged by typhoons remain low.

Despite this, the people themselves are Communities are now at varying stages of recovery, requiring relief and rehabilitation efforts targeted at improving community sustainability through addressing shelter and livelihood concerns. Environmental education on climate change, disaster preparedness and best practice is necessary to enhance community resilience.

Within the context of financial corruption and the abuse of power and politicking in managing relief efforts and land tenure issues, devastated communities are in need of rights education and advocacy efforts to support their involvement in the reconstruction process.

Appropriating the term Build Back Better to reflect the people’s aspirations for resilience and genuine development, CEC with Development and Peace and other partners is implementing a three-year recovery program that aims to:

  1. Build or rebuild the people’s organized strength (BUILD POWER AND RESILIENCY)
  2. Repair or rebuild people’s homes (BUILD HOMES)
  3. Establish and support sustainable farming, fishing and livelihood for the common good (BUILD LIVES)
  4. Develop climate-resilient communities (BUILD POWER AND RESILIENCY)