As part of its relief response to the massive devastation in the Philippines caused by typhoon Haiyan, the United Nations (UN) has launched a cash-for-work programme that will employ 200,000 villagers over the next six months.

The project, implemented by the UN Development Programme ( UNDP ), to remove post-storm waste, is part of a 20 million USD early recovery plan, which has at its core the building of resilience in communities.

It aims not only to clear up rubble from Haiyan but also to resuscitate the local economy by injecting money into it.

Funding for the plan comes from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund ( CERF ), UNDP and Japan . As of late last week, an initial group of 180 men and women started removing rubble and medical waste from two hospitals, two schools and streets in three severely damaged areas in Tacloban city.

In an update on the disaster , the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs ( OCHA ) reported that life-saving assistance is still needed, particularly food, water and shelter.

The country’s government and the World Health Organisation (WHO) also launched a vaccination programme for local children under five years old to protect them from rubella and poliomyelitis. They will also get free Vitamin A supplements to improve their immune systems.

Super typhoon Haiyan swept through the Philippines on November 8, causing landslides and floods and massive devastation in the country. Latest statistics from the Philippines’ National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) indicate that the typhoon has killed 3,633 people, injured 12,487 and left 1,179 others missing.-VNA