IFAW deploys animal rescue team to the Philippines

Wednesday, 30 September, 2009
The situation in the Philippines remains grim after Hurricane Ketsana wreaked havoc over the weekend. Death tolls continue to rise and have reached over 240. The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW – www.ifaw.org) is currently deploying a water rescue team to Manila, the capital city of the Philippines, to assist with the animal victims of the disaster.

IFAW received a request for assistance this morning from the Philippines-based Animal Welfare Coalition which is working in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture. The rescue team is out the door and will be arriving in the city within the next 24 hours.

“We need to move quickly,” said IFAW’s Disaster Relief Manager, Dick Green. “IFAW’s priority is to help mitigate the magnitude of the disaster for the affected people of Manila by giving attention to their animals which, in many cases, are all these people have left.”

The floods in the country reportedly brought the largest amount of rainfall in nearly a half a century, dumping over 16 inches of rain in 12 hours. Nearly 1.9 million homes were flooded and left people scrambling to find shelter in local schools and churches. Many are holed up unable to move because of the remaining floods.

In the latest wave of this storm, Typhoon Ketsana tore through Vietnam today, killing more than 20 people. According to officials, there remains concern regarding two new storms currently in the Pacific and what this could do to already flood-stricken cities.

“Upon arrival to Manila, we will work with the Philippines government to realize where our resources would be best directed. The number of animals impacted here will be extremely high, it is important for us to be on-scene as soon as possible,” concluded Green.

About the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)
As one of the world’s leading animal welfare organizations, IFAW has representation in 16 countries and carries out its animal welfare work in more than 40. IFAW works from its global headquarters in the United States and focuses its campaigns on improving the welfare of wild and domestic animals by reducing the commercial exploitation of animals, protecting wildlife habitats, and assisting animals in distress. IFAW works both on the ground and in the halls of government to safeguard wild and domestic animals and seeks to motivate the public to prevent cruelty to animals and to promote animal welfare and conservation policies that advance the well-being of both animals and people.

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