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Tacloban’s typhoon-hit businessmen urged to return
4 December 2013 (IRIN ), Sitting inside the makeshift kiosk she built from iron sheeting, tarpaulin and pieces of wood, typhoon survivor Jennifer Bernal personifies economic resilience as a lamp casts a glow across her face and the simple household goods she sells in Tacloban in the wake of the category 5 storm [] that devastated large parts of the city.
Free healthcare overwhelming Indonesia's Papua
3 December 2013 (IRIN ), As more people sign up for health insurance offered to indigenous people in Indonesia's Papua province, a public health system already struggling with too few health workers and substandard services is coming under greater strain.
Shing Ha Ling, Myanmar: “Poverty keeps us down”
3 December 2013 (IRIN ), Even as a child, Shing Ha Ling, 21, knew that her only way out of poverty would be through education, but she was forced to abandon her studies halfway through secondary school in her home region of Chin State, western Myanmar. Now, with only patchy income to support herself, her husband, and their 18-month-old son in Ngon Laung village, a two-hour motorbike ride across rough terrain from the closest town, Kanpetlet, she faces mounting debt.
Typhoon Haiyan's displaced seek refuge in cities
3 December 2013 (IRIN ), Almost 20,000 typhoon survivors have arrived in the Philippine capital region of Manila since Super Typhoon Haiyan devastated a large area across the central island provinces nearly one month ago, displacing a total of four million people.
Myanmar Chin education and the cycle of poverty
3 December 2013 (IRIN ), For the past three weeks, every morning before the primary school starts in Ngon Laung village in Myanmar’s northwestern Chin State, Ba Thein, the principal, looks for a teenage student who has been absent for nearly one month.
Cash-for-work cleanup in Tacloban
2 December 2013 (IRIN ), Cash-for-work initiatives to clean up the city of Tacloban are creating an impetus for thousands of survivors to get back on their feet. “This money will make a huge difference to my family,” Bernard Morteja, 34, said in the battered city, holding up a crisp 500 peso (US$11.42) note he had just received from the Taiwan-based Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation, a charity working in the Philippines to clear the streets of debris and rubble left by the winds and storm surge of Typhoon Haiyan.
Chin State’s food insecurity has many causes
2 December 2013 (IRIN ), Bamboo has a dark history in Chin State, on the borders of India and Bangladesh in Myanmar’s northwest. Roughly every 50 years the bamboo forests flower and produce masses of fruit. The abundant food supply draws in rats to eat the fruit, but they stay to cause widespread crop damage and even consume stored food.
Churches join fight against HIV in Indonesia’s Papua
2 December 2013 (IRIN ), Churches in Indonesia’s Papua province, a Christian pocket in a mainly Muslim country, are seeking to play a bigger role in the fight against HIV and AIDS in Indonesia's most affected region, despite tensions with the government over funding, as well as philosophical differences on how to prevent the spread of HIV.
Tough Australian policy fails to discourage Sri Lankan asylum seekers
29 November 2013 (IRIN ), Heightened border surveillance in Sri Lanka, as well as recent agreements between Australia and Sri Lanka to divert and deport would-be asylum seekers, have slashed the number of Sri Lankans reaching Australia’s shores by boat, say Australian authorities. Yet these measures have failed to discourage an increasing number – mostly from the island’s former conflict zones in the north and east – from attempting the dangerous journey.
Displaced first by Typhoon Haiyan, now an oil spill
29 November 2013 (IRIN ), Local government authorities in a fishing village in northern Panay island in central Philippines are scrambling to evacuate thousands of residents after toxic fumes from a bunker fuel leak caused levels of benzene in the air to rocket.

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