Philippines Typhoon Appeal

I grew up in Manila experiencing typhoon after typhoon from during the monsoon season. The strongest I had experience is “signal #4”.  So I am aware about how strong “signal #5” (Typhoon Haiyan has the strength of 147mph with gust wind of up to 170mph when it hit Tacloban).  The outcome is no doubt devastating.

I do hear from friends their concerns. They ask, “how is your family”?  Since they live in Manila; and this is in Luzon, I am not worried. They are pretty much safe from the strong winds.  But one of my work colleague sent me an email with the same concerned question; and with another one: do I have a preferred charity organization that she could donate for the typhoon victims.  Her concerned action moved me.  It made me do something.  It made me composed this email and sent it all I could possibly reach, to amplify the help she started.

As news reached me on how much destruction happened, as I view videos and pictures of the erased community presented by roof on the ground, the pickup trucks upside down, trees lying on houses, I cannot help but think on how the typhoon victims coping.  The pain is like spear piercing through when I think, how Christmas would be like for them?

Their future is on hold, until they deal with the debris around them, which may include a dead body of their love ones; and at the same time, they do what they must to survive.

We visited Philippines last December, with a vision to show and give my son to experience what I remember an intimate celebration of Christmas, the way my family always does. I had the intimacy but different.  I it is not the way I would like it to be.  But, I am still very lucky… I had the chance to see my father smile for the last time, in spite of the pain that is making him suffer.

As the only Catholic country in Asia, Filipinos celebrate Christmas, as the happiest occasion of the year. It is the occasion, families would try their best to be together to celebrate mass and share a midnight meal on Christmas Eve.  This is the Christmas wish of most people from this country. To the typhoon victims, this will be a test of faith.  These people need to know, there are people who are concerned.  Our concern for them will be additional strength for them to go through this tragedy. It will remind them hope and goodwill.

For people who would like to reach out to help, I found two sites you can donate if you are domicile in United Kingdom:
http://www.ageinternational.org.uk/donate/Typhoon-Haiyan-Yolanda/
http://www.unicef.org.uk and click on the page about Typhoon Haiyan hits the Philippines.
http://www.redcross.org.uk/typhoonappeal/

From other country other than UK, you can also go to http://www.unicef.org/ and click on the page about Philippines Typhoon Haiyan and supply the rest of information to be able to donate.

Your concern, your donation, could save a life of a typhoon victim or a family member, who they would like to spend Christmas with.  However much you give, will still be able to provide food or even a tin of food to open and share on Christmas’ Eve meal.

Thank you friends for letting me know you are there and concerned. Your sympathy is a start.