The Philippines

The Philippines is an archipelago with 7,107 islands with more than 70 different ethno-linguistic groups forming a democratic republican state of 100 million citizens as of 2015 census projections, about half are youth age. The economy is largely driven by domestic consumption which is supported by an estimated 8-10 million overseas Filipino workers that remit foreign exchange currencies for their families. This inflow of remitted cash developed dollar cash reserves from the central bank of the Philippines of at least 80 billion dollars that keeps the macro economy stable. Further, the south east asian country has a promising service sector industry in business process outsourcing, and in eco-tourism. The country has experienced continued high GDP growth rates the past 5 years, reaching 7.0 GDP and at one point becoming the highest in Asia. Although this growth was highly criticized as not inclusive, since poverty rates have largely been unchanged at 22% despite investments in social safety net programs, education, industry, and infrastructure. Acerbating this poverty and income opportunity gaps are the natural and human-induced hazards that afflict the country annually. Traversing the pacific ring of fire, the archipelago is exposed to volcanic, meteorological, and geological natural hazards. In addition, armed factions from the communist insurgency, moro separatists, kidnap for ransom groups, and private armies have displaced many civilians especially women, children, and youth throughout the country. Providing humanitarian needs for these situations has overstretched the capacity of the government and civil society organizations. The youth have been active in volunteering with different organizations from the local federation of youth councils, red cross youth societies, school organizations, and other civic minded organizations. However, more can be done to maximize the opportunities for youth to participate in disaster risk reduction planning, camp management, disaster education, and recovery and rehabilitation.

SRTEM image from Sentinel 1 rendered with QGIS 2.10

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