The U.S. will provide $20 million in assistance to help those affected by Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda, the U.S. Agency for International Development announced today.
“The U.S. Government is providing $20 million in immediate humanitarian assistance to benefit typhoon-affected populations, including the provision of emergency shelter, food assistance, relief commodities, and water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) support,” the agency said.
The statement said $10 million will go to food assistance, and another $10 million will go to other emergency supplies. Food assistance will include 55 metric tons of food including “highly nutritious bars and pastes,” a spokeswoman for USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance told ABC News. Soap, toothbrushes, toilet paper, and sanitary supplies will help prevent water-borne diseases, the spokeswoman said.
Supplies will arrive in the next day or so—enough for 10,000 families—with another shipment following soon behind. Cargo will fly into Manila and be distributed from there.
USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance also activated a Disaster Assistance Response Team to assess damage. Right now, the team consists of about nine people but will probably expand. The team is working closely with the U.S. military.
The team found critical need for emergency shelter materials like plastic sheeting in Leyte, one of the hardest-hit areas in the Philippines.