Rebuilding for a better urban future

The official blog of UN-Habitat's response to Typhoon Haiyan


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UN-Habitat Trains 338 Capiceños on Disaster-Resilient Construction

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In its campaign for sustainable self-recovery among vulnerable populations that were affected by Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda in the Philippines), UN-Habitat has conducted a series of trainings on disaster-resilient shelter construction for craftsmen in Roxas City and the municipalities of Panay and Pontevedra in Capiz Province. The activity is part of the capacity-building component of the Post-Yolanda Support for Safer Homes and Settlements Project . Continue reading

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Philippine Bamboo Tapped for Innovative Resilient Housing

A warehouse for prefabricating bamboo wall panels. All photos

A warehouse for prefabricating bamboo wall panels. Photos by Tomoko Matsushita.

Four representatives from Samahang Urban ng Maralitang Mamamayan (SUMAMA, Local Association of Urban Poor Communities) – Home Owners Association Inc. (HOAI) in Estancia travelled to Iloilo City with the UN-Habitat team on 10 July to see a model typhoon-resistant shelter built from bamboo.

The Hilti Foundation, a European charitable foundation specializing in housing, has been studying and testing the bamboo design since 2012. UN-Habitat will be working in partnership with the Hilti Foundation in Estancia to provide single-story houses built with a bamboo truss roof and reinforced bamboo wall panels covered with cement plaster.

After visiting the bamboo model house and a brief introduction of the Hilti Foundation and its local counterpart, the Homeless People’s Federation of the Philippines, the SUMAMA HOAI group toured the on-site workshop and warehouse where workers were assembling reinforced bamboo panels in various configurations for walls with windows or doors.

Two-story model of bamboo house by Hilti Foundation in Iloilo.

Two-story model of bamboo house by Hilti Foundation in Iloilo

Interior view of hefty bamboo roof truss

Interior view of hefty bamboo roof truss


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Shelter Assessment Begins in Iloilo and Capiz

UN-Habitat technical team inspecting existing house and site conditions in Pontevedra, Capiz. Photo by Beryl Jane Dela Cruz.

UN-Habitat technical team inspecting existing house and site conditions in Pontevedra, Capiz. Photos by Beryl Jane Dela Cruz.

Since 18 June, UN-Habitat has been conducting technical surveys in potential beneficiary communities of the Post-Yolanda Support for Safer Homes and Settlements Project across Western Visayas.

The team of shelter experts, architects, and community mobilizers visited residential lots acquired under the Community Mortgage Program to inspect the current conditions of the damaged houses, gather information on land tenure, and assess the state of sanitation. The assessment uses  a tool kit detailing the damage and reconstruction requirements of each house.

UN-Habitat technical team verifying the location of the houses on the map with community members. Photo by Beryl Jane Dela Cruz.

UN-Habitat technical team verifying the location of the houses on the map with community members. Photo by Beryl Jane Dela Cruz.

To further determine a beneficiary’s eligibility, UN-Habitat evaluated each household’s capacity to recover from typhoon impacts. UN-Habitat closely collaborated with leaders and members of home owners’ associations in validating data gathered from the household profiling done in April 2014.

Funded by the Government of Japan, the shelter project is also a partnership with the Social Housing Finance Corporation (SHFC) and the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council (HUDCC).


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VIDEO: More journals from the field

Climate change is a global phenomenon, but certain population groups and communities are more severely affected by its impact. UN-HABITAT Project Coordinator, Priscella Mejillano, explains how and why these groups are vulnerable to climate change, and proposes possible solutions.

Despite warnings from local officials, Typhoon Haiyan surprised many coastal communities when it swept across the Philippines on November 8, 2013. The disaster caused unimaginable devastation.