Philippines President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo visited a WFP distribution on 24 August and handed out food rations to families displaced by Typhoon Reming last December.
The President was in the area to present 61 newly built shelter units to families at a relocation site in Daraga municipality of Albay Province.
During her visit, the President helped WFP staff distribute sacks of rice, mung beans and palm oil to displaced people and food-for-work beneficiaries. She thanked WFP for its support to typhoon victims and people in conflict-affected Mindanao.
The President also toured the tents where some evacuees are still housed while waiting for completion of their shelters. Typhoon Reming (locally known as Typhoon Durian) devastated the Bicol region in December 2006, affecting over three million people.
Albay Province was hit particularly hard as the typhoon triggered deadly mudslides along the slopes of Mount Mayon, burying entire villages and displacing nearly 100,000 people.
Nine months later, over 15,000 people remain displaced as the Government works to find safe land where they can be permanently resettled.
WFP has been providing monthly rations to all registered displaced people in Albay under an Emergency Operation (EMOP) launched in January 2007.
Where possible, the food assistance is linked with work activities in the camps and resettlement sites (such as shelter construction) and training in disaster preparedness. WFP has also extended food-for-work support to farmers and fishermen who are still struggling to re-establish their livelihoods after the storm.