#TyphoonYolanda : Let’s Lend a Hand

When the oceans rise and thunders roar, I will soar with You above the storm. Father, You are King over the flood. I will be still, know You are God.”

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grief stricken victims try to recover bodies of dead loved ones after the horror of Typhoon Yolanda

I can’t imagine the feeling of losing almost everything you’ve worked hard for in mere hours. I can’t imagine the feeling of watching horrible news day after day and not knowing if your family is safe. I can’t imagine the feeling of being unable to mourn and grieve for your precious ones because you too are suffering.

I can’t imagine the horrors that the victims of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) have gone through. I can’t.

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satellite image of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan)
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a stunning image of just how big Typhoon Yolanda was

On November 05-06, the Philippines became host to one of the most vicious typhoons in the world, Yolanda. With wind speeds of more than 350kph, it covered nearly the entire Visayas region and neighbouring towns and cities from Luzon and Mindanao. By Saturday afternoon, it left a catastrophic damage to Leyte and Samar, taking away more than 10,000 lives, destroying millions of homes, and changing millions of lives forever.

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enormous waves strike the coastlines as Typhoon Yolanda hits Philippines
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the horrible aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda
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a lone man stands in the middle of the devastation caused by Typhoon Yolanda
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harsh winds and destructive waves surged along the coasts of Tacloban and Guiuan
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families recover their belongings during the destructive aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda

 

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a woman and her children huddle under strong winds and rains during Typhoon Yolanda
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a grieving mother sits beside her dead child
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survivors take refuge inside a Church after the destruction left by Typhoon Yolanda

Perhaps only one good thing came out of this: the world is uniting and, for the meantime, there are no Filipinos or Chinese or Americans or British or Africans. As citizens of the world, we are all extending a hand to our brothers and sisters who are suffering.

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It’s also impressive how many of the people here in Cebu, even those who can barely feed their families, have extended a hand to help. Donations of clothes, money, shoes, or anything will be much appreciated by the distraught families in Leyte and Samar.

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It’s saddening to know that most of the people there will spend their Christmas without a home and still grieving for their precious loved ones. I don’t even want to spend my Christmas doing traditional christmassy celebrations, knowing that a lot of people are still suffering from loss and devastation.

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But what are we if not Filipinos? Haven’t we always been admired for our sense of humor, our refusal to submit to the depression of calamities by always smiling, our protective nature over our families, and our strong Christian ties?

We will come out of this stronger, more God-fearing, more appreciative of our fellow Pinoys, and more connected to our families.

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Let’s continue praying and lending all kinds of help for our brothers and sisters. 🙂

Here’s a list of relief centres, NGOs, and charities you can contact if you want to help.

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