SEA OF GARBAGE: A man wades in neck-deep murky waters to salvage materials from shanties destroyed during the typhoon in Manila on July 30, 2012.  (Reuters photo)

MANILA — The United States will give $100,000 (P4.3 million) for disaster relief efforts in Metro Manila following severe flooding last week.

U.S. Ambassador Harry Thomas Jr. issued a disaster declaration after reports of widespread flooding in the National Capital Region.

“On behalf of the U.S. Government and the American people, I extend my heartfelt sympathies to those who are displaced and who have lost homes and livelihoods due to the floods,” he said.

“As a good friend and longstanding development partner, the United States will work with the Philippine Government to determine where our assistance is most needed. We remain committed to helping the Philippine people overcome this difficult time.”

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will conduct an initial damage assessment in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces to determine the extent of damage from flooding and the immediate needs within the affected communities.

The U.S. has been a key partner of the Philippines in providing immediate humanitarian response during natural calamities.

USAID has provided economic and humanitarian assistance worldwide for over 50 years.

In the Philippines, USAID works in partnership with the national government in creating a more stable, prosperous and well-governed country through programs that promote broad-based and inclusive economic growth, increase peace and stability in Mindanao, and reduce risks from natural disasters.

The U.S. Embassy and its affiliated offices opened for business last Thursday.
A local humanitarian aid expert has started the assessment of the damage from heavy rains in Metro Manila and nearby regions to determine assistance of the European Union (EU) for the affected population.

Lubomir Frebort, charge d’affaires of the Delegation of the European Union to the Philippines, said a local humanitarian aid expert is working on the ground to assess the damage and to determine possible assistance for the affected population in line with the EU policy of providing humanitarian aid to the victims of both natural and man-made disasters worldwide.

“The Delegation of the European Union to the Philippines extends its deep sympathy to more than 800,000 people affected by the heavy downpour in three regions,” he said.