Foreign Airlines Rebuild Homes for Typhoon Haiyan Survivors

Two foreign carriers have partnered with Habitat for Humanity Philippines to help rebuild the lives of Filipinos that were victims of Typhoon Haiyan that devastated the nation last November.

korean air corporate social responsibility
Image Source: Korean Air
Korean Air extended a helping hand in rebuilding shelters for residents of Daanbantyaan in northern Cebu. On March 15, a group of twelve employees and outsourced staff from Korean Air volunteered with Habitat for Humanity to help distribute shelter repair kits to families whose houses were either severely damaged or destroyed completely.

The shelter repair kits contain plywood lumber, corrugated roofing sheets, galvanized iron sheets, assorted nails, a saw, and a hammer. The materials can be used to construct a small dwelling or to patch walls and roofs of existing structures. Korean Air donated a total of fourteen shelter repair kits to the affected families.

"As a responsible and caring company, Korean Air has forged a second partnership with Habitat for Humanity Philippines, bringing our resources and volunteers together to help the community in this time of incredible need," said Hyung soo Kim, Korean Air Regional Manager in Cebu. "We truly hope that by distributing the shelter repair kits, more of the affected families will be able to rebuild their own homes instead of living in tents or makeshift shelters, bringing back hope and quick recovery for the people suffering from this severe disaster."

As part of the partnership with Habitat for Humanity Philippines, the beneficiaries are provided with training on the proper use of building materials and safe building practices. In addition, Habitat for Humanity provides carpenters to assist the residents in constructing their homes.

This is the second project undertaken by Korean Air. Last October, the airline supported a Habitat for Humanity build for the underprivileged in Payatas, Quezon City. The project is now nearly 70 percent complete with the donated housing units expected to be complete by the end of May 2014.

Shortly after Typhoon Haiyan, Korean Air provided relief goods to those affected by the storm. Several goods were delivered to the Philippines including 60,000 litres of mineral water, 60,000 noodle cups, 24,000 cups of dried rice, and 2,000 blankets.
delta air lines corporate social responsibility
Image Source: Habitat for Humanity Philippines
Meanwhile, another foreign carrier has also teamed up with Habitat for Humanity Philippines to provide aid to impoverished communities. Delta Air Lines launched the Delta Global Build with 50 international and 10 local volunteers from the airline to build 10 housing units in Habitat for Humanity's Bistekville I community in Payatas, Quezon City. Most of the volunteers engaged in brick laying that was supervised by Habitat engineers to ensure the quality and safety of the work.

The Delta volunteers also had an opportunity to personally connect and interact with beneficiaries and future beneficiaries of Habitat's housing projects. The interaction serves as an important aspect of the build where volunteers get to truly appreciate the importance and significance of their work. It also serves as a direct opportunity to meet the people that will benefit directly from the efforts of volunteers. The 10 house project in Payatas was recently completed and the new units will be presented to future beneficiaries.
delta air lines corporate social responsibility
Image Source: Habitat for Humanity Philippines
Korean Air and Delta Air Lines have not been the only foreign carriers with a humanitarian presence in the Philippines. In 2009, Air France KLM forged a partnership with Gawad Kalinga, a local development organization dedicated to building communities in the Philippines to end poverty. In two and a half years since the partnership was formed, Air France KLM has constructed a total of 47 houses in Bagong Silang, Caloocan City, that have been turned over to families that were once homeless. This has provided at least 250 Filipinos with hope for a better future.

The partnership fulfils Air France KLM's Corporate Social Responsibility goals "to contribute to regional development in areas where we operate." Because of Air France KLM's partnership with Gawad Kalinga, other European countries have joined to support the efforts of Gawad Kalinga. European students now fly regularly to the Philippines for immersion in a variety of Gawad Kalinga programs engaging in humanitarian services and construction of houses in the Air France KLM village and other villages around the country. Today, the program welcomes countless students from France, Austria, the United Kingdom, Italy, and the Netherlands. France has already deployed more than 200 students alone to fulfil internships in the Philippines with Gawad Kalinga.

air france klm corporate social responsibility
Image Source: Air France KLM-GK Partnership
Most recently, Air France and KLM supported Gawad Kalinga's Typhoon Haiyan relief operations. KLM deployed a Boeing 747 freighter filled with relief supplies to the disaster area in November 2013. The aircraft was provided free of charge to fly more than 100,000 kilograms of relief supplies to Cebu on behalf of Unicef and the Red Cross. The supplies consisted of tents, medical supplies, water tanks, and water purification equipment. KLM revealed that it had also raised more than 18.5 million euros to support the relief efforts.

Typhoon Haiyan was the deadliest storm to ever hit the Philippines killing more than 6,200 people. In spite of economic growth in the country over the last six years, the poverty incidence remains virtually unchanged with most recent statistics indicating that 27.9 percent of Filipinos continue to live below the poverty line. That is practically unchanged from the same period in 2006 when 28.8 percent were recorded as living in poverty according to the National Statistical Coordination Board.

Korean Air operates regularly scheduled service from Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila to Seoul-Incheon and Busan. KLM operates service from Manila to Amsterdam via Taipei, while Delta Air Lines operates flights to Tokyo and Nagoya.

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