Support for family displaced by volcanic eruption

December 21, 2021
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Taal Volcano, Philippines in February 2020

The ISWAN Hardship Fund provides one-off grants to Filipino seafarers with immediate and unexpected financial needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In January 2020, one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines, Taal Volcano, erupted for the first time in 43 years. The eruption spewed ashes over Calabarzon, Metro Manila, and some areas of Central Luzon. Taal Volcano remained in its highest state of alert for 14 days, leaving 235,655 individuals and 61,123 households displaced.1

The family of Vincent*, a seafarer, was one of the many who were affected by the eruption. They were evacuated from their home which was situated within the Taal Volcano danger zone and had to stay in an evacuation house together with 11 other families. Since the evacuation house was not managed by the government, they were not able to receive any relief supplies.

Vincent’s mother decided to ask ISWAN for assistance, and the family became the first ISWAN Hardship Fund grant recipients when the Fund was launched in the Philippines back in 2020. They received the maximum amount available, which they used to purchase basic necessities such as food supplies, toiletries, and some basic materials to repair their home, which was almost covered with ashes.

More than one year has passed and Vincent’s family is now back in their home. The family were grateful with the support they received from ISWAN in these trying times.

The ISWAN Hardship Fund is no longer accepting applications. However, if you are a seafarer and need help in a crisis, you can contact our free, confidential, 24-hour helpline, SeafarerHelp, for guidance and support. All contact details can be found at

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1 (accessed 2 December 2021).

*This seafarer’s name has been changed to protect their privacy.

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