A 16-year old girl stands in front of a damaged structure destroyed in Typhoon Goni in the Phillipines.

Rodelfa's home was devastated by Typhoon Goni. Save the Children provided Rodelfa and her family with water containers, family hygiene kits and plastic sheets.

Typhoon Goni, the World’s Strongest Storm in 2020, Batters the Philippines

Typhoon Goni made landfall in the Philippines early on the morning of November 1, 2020. It was the most powerful storm to hit the Philippines since Typhoon Haiyan struck the region on November 8, 2013, nearly seven years ago.

Ahead of the storm, known locally as Typhoon Rolly, there were fears for the safety of more than 20 million children. 

"We fear the humanitarian impact of this monster storm will be very high," said Atty. Alberto Muyot, CEO of Save the Children in the Philippines. "Children from poor households in coastal towns and remote provinces will bear the brunt of the typhoon's impact."

Just days earlier, Typhoon Molave set records as well, slamming into Vietnam as one of the biggest storms to hit the country in more than two decades. 

Here's what you need to know about the storm, its impact on children and families and how to help.

How powerful was Typhoon Goni? 

Typhoon Goni made four landfalls on November 1, 2020 and is considered the strongest storm of 2020. 

The typhoon’s catastrophic violent winds and torrential rainfall resulted in widespread destruction along its path. It cause storm surge, while its torrential rain triggered mudslides and overflowed rivers that damaged houses, schools, roads and agricultural crops. 

According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, Goni left widespread damage in the provinces of Albay, Camarines Sur, and Catanduanes.

How have children been affected by Typhoon Goni

According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), nearly 1.2 million people across 7 regions were directly affected by the typhoon.

According to government reports, over 226 schools were partially or totally damaged by the typhoon. Close to 900 schools are being used as evacuation centers.

In advance of Typhoon Goni making landfall, officials evacuated almost a million residents in the southern part of the Philippines' main island of Luzon. Concerns grow for the hundreds of thousands of children huddled in evacuation centers as a result.

As the world leader in protecting children in crisis, Save the Children knows that children have unique needs in an emergency. 

Evacuation shelters can put children's safety and protection at risk. Preventative measures to contain the spread of COVID-19, including handwashing and social distancing, may also be difficult to practice in crowded shelters.

How is Save the Children responding to Typhoon Goni

Save the Children's emergency response teams deployed to the affected area as soon as it was safe to do so. 

Prepositioned supplies, including health and hygiene items, are being distributed to help children and families like Rodelfa's, pictured avobe, whose home was devastated by Typhoon Goni. Save the Children provided Rodelfa and her family with water containers, family hygiene kits and plastic sheets.

Our teams are also distributing family hygiene kits that include essentials to prevent the spread of COVID19 such as face masks and hand sanitizer. 

What is Save the Children's history of responding to typhoons in the Philippines?

Save the Children was among the first on the ground providing emergency relief after Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines in November 2013.

After the water subsided we remained, supporting the rebuilding of homes and livelihoods of over 1 million people, including 826,000 children.

Save the Children teams were also deployed immediately after Typhoon Haima struck in 2016.

Save the Children has a long history responding to disasters in the Philippines, including Typhoon Koppu in 2015 and Typhoon Hagupit in 2014.

What is the difference between a hurricane, typhoon and cyclone?

A hurricane, typhoon and cyclone are all storms that reach wind speeds of 74 mph. However, what the powerful storm is called depends on where in the world it appears.

A storm occurring in the Atlantic and Caribbean is called a hurricane, while typhoons form in the Asia-Northwest Pacific region. Cyclones are specific to the South Pacific and Indian Ocean.

As hurricanes and typhoons hit land, they begin to lose strength until dissipating completely. Without the warm ocean water fueling them, they eventually diminish in both speed and size. Unfortunately, this doesn't mean the storm can't cause catastrophic or even deadly damage.

How can I help children and families impacted in emergencies?

Nobody knows when the next crisis will strike, but your support helps Save the Children provide assistance in the critical first hours and days of an emergency when children need us most. When generous people like you make your 100% tax-deductible gift, children's lives are saved and their futures are brighter.

Donate to the Children's Emergency Fund today.

Updated November 11, 2020 | Photo credit: LJ Pasion / Save the Children


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