Typhoon Update

What Mercy in Action are doing to help those in need…

On Friday, one of the worst storms to have ever hit land swept through the central region of the Philippines, leaving disaster and chaos in it’s wake.

In Talisay, Mercy in Action prepared ourselves to offer the best protection we could for the vulnerable children and families we work with. Our staff opened up our drop in centre throughout the day and nights leading up to and following the storm to provide safe accommodation for 27 street kids. The older boys from our boy’s home also helped run this to provide protection for the children they used to share the streets with. We also opened up our children’s home to those families with houses along the shoreline who were most at risk. They packed into the canteen and staff accommodation and stayed there for several days until it was safe to return home.

Photo from BBC News

Electricity and water was down for days but our staff and clients kept their spirits up. However, once it was safe to survey the scene it was evident that the destruction had been widespread. The vast majority of people we work with live in houses made of wood and plastic sheeting with a corrugated iron roof and many of these houses had already been weakened by the recent earthquakes that hit the Philippines. Therefore, most of the families we work with have serious damage to their houses, such as roofs being blown off, walls falling down and furniture ruined. A few have lost their entire house and everything they have ever owned.

Several women we work with went into premature labour due to the stress caused by the typhoon, and so we have several premature babies that need caring for. One in particular is very unwell. There is no free healthcare available in the Philippines, and so Mercy in Action will be covering those hospital bills, wherever possible, to help ease the financial burden and stress on these families. We are also providing food and water to those most in need.

Cargo ships washed ashore are seen four days after super typhoon Haiyan hit Anibong town, Tacloban city, central Philippines November 11, 2013.

The city of Tacloban (images from BBC News)

We have set up a dedicated Just Giving page to help raise funds to support the relief work we are carrying out throughout the Philippines. Please visit  http://www.justgiving.com/Mercy-in-Action1

The money raised will also go way beyond families in Talisay. We have two contacts in Leyte, one of whom is in Tacloban, one of the cities worst affected by the typhoon. According to the BBC, as many as 10,000 could have died in Tacloban alone, and the scene resembles the aftermath of a tsunami. Mercy in Action’s Philippines Directors Tim and Emily Rosal hope to lead a team to visit Leyte and provide assistance and aid wherever they can. They will take food to distribute as well as assessing what financial and practical help we can provide them with. We have our own team of builders in Talisay who we could use to rebuild those communities destroyed by this tragedy. But we need your help and support.

We will soon be launching our Christmas meal appeal that raises money to provide families with enough food to last them for 3 days over Christmas. In previous years the food has mostly been distributed in and around Talisay City. While we will still be doing this, we hope to give this food out to those across the Philippines who have been most affected by the typhoon. This Christmas will be harder than any before it for many living in these devastated parts of the country.

Mercy in Action’s mission, both in Talisay and further afield in the Philippines, is to rebuild these devastated communities and help get them back on their feet. As we look further into the future, we have to think of ways to provide long term care and support. With a death toll predicted to be way over 10,000, there will be many orphans who will need homes and families to care for them, at first simply to help them to survive. Then the grieving and restoration process can begin. We want to stand with the Philippines, and the Filipinos who we love so much, but we cannot do this alone.

Please consider donating whatever you can to help us rebuild these communities who have lost absolutely everything. Every penny you give will be spent on essential resources and building work in the Philippines. You can give online at http://www.justgiving.com/Mercy-in-Action1 or call our office with your card details: 01225 443600.

Thank you.

2 Responses to “Typhoon Update”
  1. Marisol Hopkins says:

    Just wanted to say how much I appreciate the help you our doing in my province, my family is from anibong tacloban city, the house that left standing in front of that 2 ship was my house behind that 2 ship 3 of my siblings home use to be there, in front that home standing where my brother use to live, all of my siblings are left with nothing, they are absuletely homeless, some of my family are using that home for there shelter, if you and team are helping pls help them, your team can go and visit them at that home where they are sheltering. Pls send help to those people in anibong where schools are about to open and lots of families are using that school as there homes, sad to say the gov. Are not doing enough to help the people of Leyte and tacloban. Again thank you for all your help, I’m also doing what I can to help my relatives and family.

    • Dear Marisol. We are so sorry to hear of the devastation caused to your family by the typhoon. We are working as hard as we can to help as many people as possible. We sincerely hope other aid workers are in the area your family live in and that they are now receiving the help and support they need. Best wishes to all.

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