Avec l’aide de travailleurs communautaires, nos équipes ont soutenu la formation d’associations de démanteleurs © Lam Duc Hien


1.78 million

people live in Manila


of households live in informal settlements in Barangay 775


of families living in slums in the city of Manila live in areas at risk of fires and flooding

The situation in Philippines

Médecins du Monde is empowering the communities of Barangay 775 in Manila City


The people of Barangay 775 live in one of the poorest and most densely populated parts of Manila which is regularly afflicted by disasters. Since 2001 three major fires have partially destroyed the barangay and the area is often flooded. The residents are not sufficiently well-informed to be able to take appropriate measures in the event of disasters. In addition, some areas are inaccessible or difficult to reach for emergency vehicles.


Waste management and access to sewage systems and hygiene are extremely limited. Furthermore, the poorest families are not automatically enrolled in PhilHealth, the Filipino health insurance system. This means they are even more vulnerable if they become ill.

The importation of electrical and electronic equipment waste is a significant source of income for the Philippines where 45% of the population live on less than $5 a day© Lam Duc Hien
The importation of electrical and electronic equipment waste is a significant source of income for the Philippines where 45% of the population live on less than $5 a day© Lam Duc Hien

Our activities in the Philippines

People exposed to environmental health risks

Reducing the impact of environmental issues to improve the health of communities

In 2018, Médecins du Monde developed a pilot project entitled AYOS ! (‘Let’s go!’). Through AYOS !, we are seeking to facilitate social change and work with the community to improve living conditions. Residents are helped to reduce their exposure to health risks and to improve their health. This community approach helps to encourage the residents of Barangay 775 to come together to take action, and also strengthens the capacity and good governance practices of the local authorities.  


Developing momentum within local communities

The community approach adopted by the project has helped to develop a real momentum within communities by giving them the power to take action themselves and influence their environment and their health. In the Philippines, Médecins du Monde looks at health from several angles:

  • reducing the risks of natural and human disasters,
  • capacity-building and empowerment of the population and local authorities,
  • reducing environmental health risks,
  • improving access to healthcare.


The residents and local authorities in the barangay receive training in disaster risk reduction and first aid. Médecins du Monde also offers training in leadership, management and financial literacy 

to the local authorities and members of the community. In addition, we work with the community to run information campaigns on waste management in Barangay 775 and are involved in the establishment of a solid waste management committee in the area.


In 2019


  • reached 7,000 people (1,430 households) in Barangay 775
  • trained 195 volunteers in the barangay 
  • held fire drills
  • integrated 2 health volunteers from the community into the group of 11 healthcare workers allocated by the health centre, providing a link between the health centre and the community


© Meri Bokeira
© Meri Bokeira

A project with informal electronic waste recyclers

From 2012 to 2016, Médecins du Monde in the Philippines ran a project supporting informal electronic waste recyclers in Manila. In particular, our work involved officially establishing four community organisations and reducing the individual and collective risks of electronic waste management.

Support for these four organisations continued between January 2017 and December 2019, thanks to backing from the Fondation Médecins du Monde. This support helped to strengthen the capacity of the organisations and their members, and to improve the health and livelihoods of the informal electronic waste recyclers.

The organisations received training and financial support to enable their members to develop new income-generating activities. Thus, the organisations were able to organise themselves better, recruit more members, meet with the local authorities and develop alternative income-generating activities less harmful to health than dismantling electronic waste.  



our institutional support

La Fondation Veolia Environnement soutient Médecins du Monde
Les conséquences sur la santé sont désastreuses © Lam Duc Hien
Les conséquences sur la santé sont désastreuses © Lam Duc Hien
Emergency response following Typhoon Rosing in the three provinces of Quezon, Camarines Norte and Camarines Sur.
Primary healthcare for isolated populations in the archipelagos of Camotes, Biri, Capul and San Antonio (Northern Samar).
Opening of a pilot programme to reduce health and environmental risks in the informal electrical and electronic waste recycling sector.
Emergency response on the island of Leyte following Typhoon Haiyan.
Conclusion of emergency response.
Scaling up of the health and environmental risk reduction programme.
New programme on the multiple environment-related risks to health.
Exploratory mission for a new sexual and reproductive health programme.

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