World Vision preparing for typhoon in Vietnam, Laos as Philippines aid begins

World Vision is bracing for Super Typhoon Haiyan's landfall in Vietnam, while staff in the Philippines are already travelling to affected areas to deliver urgent aid. 

After causing mass devastation and leaving fears that the death toll in the Philippines may soar, the massive storm is due to hit Vietnam and Laos today with winds of up to 180km/h.

World Vision Vietnam’s National Humanitarian and Emergency Affairs Coordinator Le Van Duong said even if Haiyan has lost some of its power, it will still be a formidable force when it hits his country. 

“While the storm will be weaker than when it struck the Philippines, Haiyan still poses danger to the people of Vietnam,” Mr Le said. “We fear the typhoon could have the potential to destroy many homes and lead to severe floods and landslides.”

Vietnam and Laos are already reeling from a series of tropical storms in recent months, and Typhoon Haiyan may worsen the situation, especially as both countries are in the middle of their annual rice harvest. 

“We are working closely with government counterparts and communities to prepare for the storm, including the reinforcement of homes and to stockpile food and water supplies,” Mr Le said.

World Vision staff in the Philippines have started the mammoth task of working with local authorities to establish the immediate needs of survivors, but with roads blocked, power out, communications systems down and widespread flooding and landslides, it could be days before the full extent of the damage is known. 

World Vision communications manager Gjeff Lamigo said he was concerned Typhoon Haiyan may have lived up to the warnings issued about its force. 

“The impact has been tremendous. It was reported to be the biggest typhoon of the year, and it is,” he said. “There have been reports of massive devastation, uprooted trees and houses destroyed.”

World Vision is working to reach 1.2 million people in the Philippines with food and clean water – the greatest needs in more than 100 evacuation centres. Another 3000 tarpaulins and 5000 blankets are also being flown in. 

Among the areas affected are locations of 18 long-term community development programs where World Vision assists 34,460 registered children, as well as Bohol, where a magnitude-7.2 earthquake struck last month. 

In September, World Vision responded to mass flooding in southern Laos where some 66,000 people were affected, and hundreds of hectares of rice destroyed. The organization provided clean water, food and emergency medical kits to thousands in the immediate aftermath of the flood and is continuing to support the affected communities with livelihood recovery projects. 

World Vision works in 56 districts in Vietnam, supporting some 71,500 children. In Laos the aid organisation supports more than 40,000 children.

To donate to the Emergency Preparedness Fund, which helps World Vision respond to disasters, call 13 32 40 or go to

Media contacts: Kate Rose – 0418 528 683 /
Gabrielle Brophy – 0407 575 112 /

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