GenSan extends aid to evacuees from Marawi City

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/28 July) — The city government has assisted some 3,813 displaced persons from conflict-torn Marawi City who have temporarily settled in parts of the city in the last two months.

Marifer Hofer, coordinator for internally displaced persons of the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO), said the evacuees are currently staying with their relatives and host families in nine of the city’s 26 barangays.

Citing their records, she said a total of 788 families have resettled in the area since the conflict in Marawi City erupted on May 23.

Hofer said they monitored the arrival of the evacuees through reports from four main checkpoints of the Army-led Joint Task Force GenSan and the city police as well as referrals from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)-Region 12.

She said they conducted the initial profiling and documentation of the evacuees last June 3 and has since conducted 11 assessments.

Barangay Bula hosts the most number of displaced families with 272, followed by Labangal with 197, and San Isidro with 70.

The other evacuees are situated in in Barangays Calumpang, Fatima, Baluan, Dadiangas South, Apopong and Tambler.

“Since the start of our monitoring, we already conducted four rounds of material assistance distribution and psychosocial activities,” Hofer said in a briefing.

The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council had allotted some P5 million to augment the relief operations for residents displaced by the conflict in Marawi City and assist those who have evacuated to the area.

Hofer said the distributed materials comprised family food packs and other relief items from the CSWDO and other donors.

The psychosocial sessions, which focused on trauma counseling, were participated by adult evacuees and their children, she said.

She said their office also assisted the enrolment in local schools of the displaced learners or students.

Hofer said the local government has not released any financial assistance but DSWD-12 has set aside calamity cash grants for each family.

“The DSWD assured that the evacuees here will be included in the rehabilitation activities later on for Marawi,” she said.

Hofer said the city government will continue to assist the needs of the evacuees until they eventually return to their respective communities.

She said some of them already want to return home but they advised them to wait for the situation to normalize and the proper clearance from authorities. (MindaNews)