Posts Tagged ‘typhoon Yolanda’

Hello everyone! Finally got my order of t-shirts from ABS CBN.  Josef and I ordered three but there is no size yet for the third one. A shirt costs P250.00 and all proceeds will go to the survivors of typhoon Yolanda. Another way of sharing aside from donating goods and sending cash.


Loosely translated, it means “let’s help” or “let’s be one  in helping”, extending our hands and making our kababayans  cope and rebuild and bring back life to normalcy again.  And with God’s grace and determination, we can do it.

Tulong na. Tabang na. Tayo na.


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bangon pilipinas

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” – Elisabeth Kubler Ross

I am thinking of  a nice title for this blog but all I can remember are the faces of those survivors , fellow Filipinos who were directly affected by typhoon Yolanda. We get to see several countries pitching in, embracing us  and helping not just financially but their presence in the devastated areas are like beacons of light and hope for  everyone. We get to see that the bayanihan spirit is still alive. We get to see people from all walks of life, from all areas in the Philippines doing their share of helping, making their presence felt, trying to reach out to  our unfortunate kababayans.  And the silent majority  are there quietly doing their share of repacking, donating goods and extending their hands and praying  that this tragedy would somehow make us realize that life is short but it is never too late to do our bit of kindness. We are in mourning – mourning for  the  loss of thousands and thousands of people from the Visayas, we are in mourning seeing the devastation caused by typhoon Yolanda, we are mourning for those little children whose lives were suddenly cut short.

Some observers say they admire the resilience of every Filipino, the ability that one could still smile despite everything, the desire to rise again from the rubbles  and  rebuild one’s life despite all the odds. They admire the way we handle grief, weeping in earnest for what happened but life has to go on and we pick up the pieces  slowly but with determination that we could do it.

Earlier on, I was one of those who asked, “but where are the local officials and where is the national government?”  I would have ranted like the rest of the netizens in the social media whose way of coping was criticizing every move of our government officials, help is slow in coming and it’s a matter of life and death –  save our people from extreme hunger and thirst. The former are doing their best to bring sanity to such chaos but it still seems lacking and they need to move fast.  I posted this earlier at Facebook  and some of my friends had different reactions to it. Short of cursing the government for their slow move, they won’t take it sitting down. The government must know that they lack the push to do what needs to be done.

Rant all you want, criticize all you want but are you doing something? ARE WE DOING OUR SHARE in helping the government make life easier for the typhoon victims?  Sec. Dinky Soliman said that this is a collective effort so let us join hands and be one. It does not help that all we do is post negative comments and act as if we know better.

So I told them: I respect all your opinions here. All of us are affected in one way or another by this massive, destructive, enormous and devastating calamity. All I’m saying is that we must not negatively react “lock, stock and barrel” to all the news we read online.  And while we all know that it is the government’s duty and responsibility to help our people, let us do our share. Sometimes, ACTIONS ARE  BETTER THAN WORDS.

I was surprised to receive this wonderful letter from my niece who is a student at Oklahoma Christian University. She said and I quote:

Hi Tita Arlene! I just wanted to say a quick hello and see how you guys are doing. I also wanted to let you know that even though I know you guys weren’t affected directly by the typhoon recently, my school has sent a lot of love and prayers to the Philippines this past week and a half. We have a Filipino alumna  from here who spoke to us today about it and we also had a special prayer time specifically for the Philippines last Tuesday. So if you know anyone who was directly affected, please let them know we’re thinking about them! I definitely think about you guys a lot because it’s been so many years since I’ve seen all of you. I’m glad that you all are okay, and I hope you’re doing well. Please give Nate a hug for me on his birthday this week. I can’t wait for the day until I finally meet him. I always take joy in seeing the pictures that you and Ate Nissa post of him  – he’s definitely growing up fast! Anyway, I miss you all and please send everyone my love. Take care always!

Mae 🙂

Everyone is praying for the Philippines.  Our faith is bigger than any storm that comes into our lives. Bangon Pilipinas!

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I really admire how the people in all areas of the Philippines are doing their share of fund-raising to help the flood victims in  Eastern Visayas, Palawan and Mindoro. Special thanks go to the nations which sent their financial support and personnel (medical teams) to help the people of the Philippines.

Last Sunday, our town mayor initiated a fund-raising drive to help the flood victims and the wholehearted support from Cainta residents is so touching. We’ve been there and we know how it feels to be victims of a calamity. Typhoon Ondoy did that to us but the destruction it caused can never compare  to the devastation brought by typhoon Yolanda.This morning, Josef and I went to the municipal hall to give a little cash and a box of used clothing that my daughter left behind when she got married two years ago. So proud to be living in a place where our local government is sensitive to the needs of the people. Hats off to you Mayor Atty.Kit Nieto.


IMG_5345Love the clean and new look of our municipal hall.

We have reached the end of the 26 letters of the alphabet and now another tropical depression has entered the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR). Gosh, and it will be taking the same path as typhoon Yolanda. I am really praying this would not make a landfall.

And didn’t I say that a little bit of kindness goes a long, long way? It can inspire, it can lift people up. When you give, give without counting the cost and give freely from the heart. Give cheerfully because the simple act of kindness gives back a wonderful feeling inside.

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I am reposting this here  for what it’s worth,  the Philippines’ lead climate negotiator, Nadarev Saño, delivered a tearful plea to diplomats assembled in Doha almost a year ago.

And I am sharing this link from CNN so everyone would see the devastation caused by typhoon Yolanda. We are appealing for your help even just through prayers but if you can spare something to help our people, we’ll be forever grateful. No matter how resilient the Filipino spirit is, we still need to extend our helping hands to those who badly need them right now.
Here’s another appeal from our Philippine delegate on the ongoing United Nations Climate Conference in Warsaw. May the  aftermath of super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) speaks  for itself.

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“You will lose someone you can’t live without,and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.”― Anne Lamott

This is my first attempt at blogging since typhoon Yolanda struck the country last Friday morning. Seeing all those video footage, updates on local radio and television, I could not begin to fathom the depth of sadness I feel for our “kababayans” affected by the strongest and most destructive typhoon that visited the country. How could one survive such devastation? How could one endure such pain of losing loved ones and seeing your properties destroyed beyond repair? And you wonder, typhoon Yolanda made six landfalls. And there are still more areas not reached by help from our government because communications are down and the roads are impassable. Some remote villages in Leyte are almost wiped out. You can see how desperate the people are , looting business establishments just to survive.  The government assured everyone that there is enough food for all the victims but the problem is, it is slow in coming. It was only today that some roads were cleared for help to pass through by land. What was left of Tacloban airport  is the runway which is being used now by C130 planes to bring relief goods to the typhoon victims.

One thing good though that you will see everywhere is the desire of everyone to help in any way, financial or otherwise. We will rise again just as we stood on our feet seeing calamities after calamities in our midst.




Typhoon Yolanda brings back sad memories of typhoon Ondoy, another destructive typhoon that devastated Metro Manila four years ago. Our house was almost seven feet under water and most, if not all of our belongings were destroyed by the flood. Lucky for us, we had a house to come back to although we had to do some renovations to make it habitable again. Have you ever imagined that kind of helpless feeling and just cry your heart out in frustration?  When all you can  do is pray and hold on to each other because you are not sure if you’ll still see each other tomorrow or the following day or the next?

We are having our own fund drive here in our town to help the people in  the Visayas and some parts of Luzon. Our mayor is encouraging everyone to help in any way they  can. And donations from other countries keep pouring in. Thank you so much. God bless the Philippines.

(photos courtesy of DZMM)

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WHEREAS, Typhoon Yolanda (international codename: Haiyan) caused widespread death, destruction and incalculable damage in several areas, including the Samar provinces, Leyte, Cebu, Iloilo, Capiz, Aklan and Palawan;

WHEREAS, in accordance with Republic Act No. 10121, or the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) has recommended the declaration of a State of National Calamity;

WHEREAS, the declaration of a State of National Calamity will hasten the rescue, recovery, relief, and rehabilitation efforts of the government and the private sector, including any international humanitarian assistance; and

WHEREAS, this declaration will, among others, effectively control the prices of basic goods and commodities for the affected areas and afford government ample latitude to utilize appropriate funds for rescue, recovery, relief, and rehabilitation efforts of, and to continue to provide basic services to, affected populations, in accordance with law.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BENIGNO S. AQUINO III, President of the Philippines, by virtue of the powers vested in me by the Constitution and by law, do hereby declare a State of National Calamity.

All departments and other concerned government agencies are hereby directed to implement and execute rescue, recovery, relief, and rehabilitation work in accordance with pertinent operational plans and directives.

All departments and other concerned government agencies are also hereby directed to coordinate with, and provide or augment the basic services and facilities of, affected local government units.

Law enforcement agencies, with support from the Armed Forces of the Philippines, are directed to undertake all necessary measures to ensure peace and order in affected areas, as may be necessary.

The State of National Calamity shall remain in force and effect until lifted by the President.

DONE in the City of Manila, this 11th day of November in the year of our Lord, Two Thousand and Thirteen.


By the President:


Executive Secretary

source: Official Gazette of the Republic of the Phils.

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We are now under state of national calamity. I don’t know, since typhoon Yolanda, I have almost forgotten how to make a blog. Just crying my heart out and bombarding heaven with prayers for our unfortunate brothers and sisters affected by the strongest typhoon on earth ever recorded in the last three decades.  May I ask you all to say a prayer for our country? Thank you so much. (I have posted the English translation of PNoy’s statement below).

Kagalang-galang Benigno S. Aquino III
Pangulo ng Pilipinas
Ukol sa bagyong Yolanda

[Inihayag noong ika-11 ng Nobyembre 2013]

Nitong Biyernes, humagupit sa malaking bahagi ng Kabisayaan ang Bagyong Yolanda. Isa ito sa pinakamalakas na bagyo sa kasaysayan ng bansa, kung di man ng buong mundo. Nagpapasalamat po tayo sa mga dalubhasa mula sa PAGASA, Mines and Geosciences Bureau, Phivolcs, at DOST, na kumalap at nagbigay ng tama at detalyadong impormasyon na naging dahilan upang makapaghanda nang maayos ang ating mga kababayan. Ito ang nagbigay-daan para sa iniuulat na mababang casualty count mula sa ilang mga probinsyang dinaanan din ng bagyo, tulad ng Oriental at Occidental Mindoro, Negros Occidental, Palawan, Aklan, at Romblon, kung saan maagang nakapaghanda ang lokal na pamahalaan.

Sa kabila po nito, personal din nating nasaksihan ang matinding pinsalang idinulot ng bagyong ito sa Leyte at Samar. Dito sa kung saan tila naembudo ang mga storm surge ni Yolanda nakita ang pinakamabigat na pinsala, at dito nakatutok ang ating pagbibigay lingap sa mga sandaling ito.

Humihingi rin po tayo ng pang-unawa sa lahat. Sa paghahagupit ni Yolanda, nawalan ng kuryente at komunikasyon sa maraming lugar. Apektado po nito, hindi lamang ang pakikipag-ugnayan ng mga nais makasigurong ligtas ang kanilang mga kaanak, kundi pati na rin ang koordinasyon ng ating relief efforts. Para mapadala ang pangangailangan, kailangan nating malaman ang kakulangan ng bawat lugar; nahirapan po tayong makuha ang mga datos na ito. May ilang lokal na pamahalaan, sa lakas ng delubyo, na bumigay din po dahil kabilang sa mga nasalanta ang kanilang mga tauhan at opisyal. Isipin po ninyo, bumalik tayo sa situwasyon kung saan pasa-pasa ang impormasyon—walang TV, cellphone, o internet; sarado ang mga tindahan; hindi naging madali ang pag-oorganisa ng relief efforts. Naging ugat po ito ng kaguluhan sa ilang mga lugar.

Dito po’y papasok ang pambansang pamahalaan. Imbis na dumagdag lamang tayo sa lakas ng mga komunidad, kinailangang manguna ng pambansang gobyerno. Nilinis ng DPWH ang mga kalsadang binagsakan ng malalaking puno at mga poste ng kuryente ; lahat ng naireport na bara ay nabuksan na. Ayon na rin sa kahilingan ng mga lokal na opisyal, nagpadala tayo ng karagdagang 800 mga sundalo at pulis sa Tacloban upang ibalik ang kaayusan. May tatlong repacking center po tayong naglalabas ng di baba sa 55,000 mga family food pack kada araw; inatasan na po natin si Secretary Abaya ng DOTC upang imando ang pagdadala ng mga relief goods kung saan ito pinakakailangan.

Inuna natin ang pagdadala ng pagkain, tubig, at gamot sa mga pinakaapektadong lugar. Dadaanin po natin sa mga barangay ang pagpapamigay ng mga pangunahing pangangailangang ito; 24,000 family food packs na po ang napamudmod sa Tacloban kahapon, at nakasentro ang pagpapamigay sa walong pinakamalaking barangay doon. Mayroon tayong dalawang water purification facilities, at marami pa ang darating, upang masigurong may maiinom ang ating mga kababayan. Inaayos na natin ang mekanismo para mapalawak ang saklaw ng social housing program ng pamahalaan. Mula po sa ating mga calamity funds, contingency funds, at savings, mayroong 18.7 billion pesos na maaaring gamitin upang ibangon ang mga lugar na pininsala ni Yolanda.

Dumarating na rin po ang tulong mula sa ibang bansa; 22 bansa na po ang nagpanata o nagbigay na ng tulong, kabilang na ang Indonesia, Amerika, Inglatera, bansang Hapon, Singapore, New Zealand, pati na rin po ang Hungary. Tumutulong na rin po sa iba’t ibang paraan ang pribadong sektor upang ibangon ang mga nasalanta, gaya ng sa pagbabalik ng daloy ng komunikasyon at  pati ang pagmimintena ng krudo sa mga apektadong lugar.

Kasabay nito, idinedeklara po natin ang State of national calamity upang mapabilis ang mga pagkilos ng pamahalaan para sa pagsagip, paghahatid ng tulong, at rehabilitasyon ng mga probinsyang sinalanta ni Yolanda. Mahalaga rin ito, hindi lamang para panatilihing kontrolado ang mga presyo ng mga pangunahing produkto at serbisyo na kakailanganin ng ating mga kakabayan, kundi upang maiwasan din ang overpricing at hoarding ng mga mahahalagang bilihin. Inaprubahan din natin ang kabuuang P1.1 billion para pandagdag sa Quick Response Funds ng DSWD at DPWH, para sa agarang pagpapatupad ng mga kinakailangang suporta para sa muling pagbangon ng mga kababayan nating hinagupit nitong trahedya.

Bagaman nakapagtala ng mababang casualty count sa maraming mga probinsyang dinaanan ni Yolanda, sa mga lugar naman na tila naembudo ang bagyong ito, talaga naman pong malaki ang pinsalang nasaksihan natin. Tulad ninyo, gusto ko ring malaman kung paanong maiibsan ang situwasyon sa mga lugar na tulad nito.

Sa mga darating na araw, maaasahan ninyo, lalo pang papaspas ang ayuda. Ang panawagan ko lang po: Ang pagiging kalmado, pagdarasal, pakikisama, at pakikipagtulungan. Siya ang magpapabangon sa atin mula sa sakunang ito.

Maraming salamat po at magandang gabi sa inyong lahat.


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