Psychosocial Intervention Eyed in Disaster-Stricken Areas

Psychosocial Intervention Eyed in Disaster-Stricken Areas

Silliman University is considering sending a team to areas affected by typhoon Yolanda, particularly Leyte and Samar, to administer psycho-social intervention.

This move replicates a similar initiative of the University in Bohol, a few days after it was hit by a magnitude 7.2 earthquake in October. Silliman sent to Bohol a team of 39 guidance counselors,  social workers, Nursing faculty and student theater advocates to perform stress debriefing in the affected communities. Prof. Emervencia Ligutom, Director of the Institute of Service-Learning, and Dr. Edna Gladys Calingacion of the College of Arts and Sciences, who is formerly Dean of Students, headed the team. 

The plan of the University to send a team for psychosocial intervention complements its continuing efforts to generate donations for typhoon victims and help locate family members of its students, faculty and alumni through its search and rescue operation. 

Both call for donations of the University and the search and rescue operations have been successful.

After it issued on November 11 an appeal for donations for the typhoon victims, Silliman was able to gather around 13 tons of food, water and clothing. This comprised the first shipment that the University official endorsed to the Philippine Navy in Cebu in the morning of November 16. The relief goods have been packed accordingly and will be distributed to typhoon victims in Leyte and Samar. The breakdown of the first shipment: 405 boxes assorted food items with 1761 packs, 76 sacks assorted food items with 762 packs, 68 boxes assorted used clothing, 152 sacks assorted used clothing, 102 boxes of mineral water with 1791 bottles, 3 boxes sardines with 372 cans.

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Although still ongoing, the team of ten volunteers from among its faculty and staff deployed by the University in Leyte to help locate family members of its students and faculty and staff has already submitted its initial report on November 16, the day after it arrived in Leyte. It was able to gather information on the status and current location of at least ten families. The list is being generated and will be transmitted to the concerned students, faculty or staff. The team is expected to cover more areas in the next days. Ten days is allotted for Silliman's search and rescue operation. Coordination with the military and partners in the Visayas State University is being made to help ensure the team's safety.