Save the Children is sending an assessment team Tuesday to assess the situation of children and their families camped in evacuation centers in municipalities affected by the Taal volcano eruption.
Authorities continue to evacuate people living in the 14 kilometer danger zone, home to almost half a million population, as hazardous eruption “is one pattern being looked at” due to persistent volcanic earthquakes in the last 24 hours.
At least 6,000 families living in towns near Taal Volcano in Batangas province were evacuated as of Sunday afternoon following escalation of eruptive activity. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) has monitored 75 volcanic earthquakes as of Monday morning.
Jerome Balinton, Humanitarian Manager of Save the Children Philippines will lead the assessment team to meet with local officials in Batangas and visit evacuation centers in the most affected towns of Agoncillo, Talisay, Laurel, San Nicolas, also in Batangas.
He also called on local authorities to prioritize children in the evacuation as they are the most vulnerable to suffer from the health hazards of ash fall containing small particles that could reach the lungs.
“We also call on local authorities to implement a reunification process for children and their families since the ongoing evacuation is prioritizing children and the elderly,” said Balinton.
Millions of learners in regions 4A, Metro Manila and Central Luzon were affected with the suspension of classes in all levels due to heavy ash fall.
"As volcanic activity continues, Save the Children assessment teams will be on the ground. We are deeply concerned for the health and safety of the families in that area, especially children who are most vulnerable to health risk from the volcanic ash fall,” Atty. Alberto Muyot, Chief Executive Officer of Save the Children Philippines said.