Relief Efforts Continue in the Philippines
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Philippines, Asia-Pacific Region
More than a week after Typhoon Haiyan devastated several communities in the Philippines, the Church of the Nazarene continues to serve the area’s 13 million affected people.
As of Monday, the category 5 storm caused nearly 4,000 casualties, displaced 4 million people, and injured more than 18,000 residents, including a Nazarene pastor and his family.
Please help in this time of need by clicking here.
Many survivors from the Leyte Province are fleeing to Cebu City in search of food and clean water, which are quickly becoming scarce.
Nazarene Compassionate Ministries is in the process of establishing five base camps in the hard-hit areas of Tacloban and Ormoc (Leyte Province), Balangiga and Balangkayan (Eastern Samar Province), and in the Iloilo Province. The camps will house medical teams and serve as distribution centers for needed supplies.
Supplies from around the world are arriving in the Philippines. NCM and Heart to Heart International will ship 125 pallets of medical supplies, water filtration systems, water purification tablets, tarps, food, and Crisis Care Kits. NCM Canada will send three shipments containing 14 pallets of food, 40 pallets of dried foods, disaster aid kits and tents, soap hygiene packs, water filters, and tarps.
Despite damage to the building, Tacloban Church of the Nazarene is an official government evacuation site.
“We have found our church members reaching out to others,” said Todd Aebisher, Asia-Pacific regional communications coordinator. “Our young college student stress counselors are leading the program in Tacloban. Also in Tacloban, our church has become a community location for delivering potable water and a refuge for several families who are sleeping in pews. The children play in the church, hang on our arms, and are safe.
What is amazing is the faith that we have observed. Written in paint across the only wall standing of a house were these words, ‘keep praying… we are down but we are not out!’”
For an updated video of the relief efforts in the Philippines, click here.
How to help
1) Please share with your friends and family and church members. We have a page on our website where you can download bulletin inserts in English or Spanish and with downloadable pictures to share on Facebook or Twitter or during your worship service. Those are all available by clicking here.
2) Consider donating in this time of need to help those in the Philippine region. If you are donating from the United States, please help in this time of need by clicking here. Canada donors please click here. For those outside of the US and Canada, to donate you can click here.
3) Volunteer Information
- We have an initial 8 medical team members on the ground dispersed in three locations.
- Our first priority is to address life-threatening needs and to establish centers for distribution of critical relief food and water. National Nazarenes have been coordinating this distribution (we are serving to empower the Philippine Church and assisting them in their response).
- We will begin looking at the longer term recovery, which will include teams to help with debris removal, rebuilding, counseling, and various other elements involved in such a massive disaster.
- A Boeing 747 full of supplies will be arriving on November 25th, for distribution by our teams, in coordination with Nazarene compassionate Ministries and Heart to Heart International.
Please understand that logistics in this area are very difficult. There is currently a mass exodus of people from the area, so while it might be possible to get teams in, getting them back out and facilitating their movements while on the ground has proven to be an item requiring much planning and forethought (all vehicles booked and ferries full for a week in advance with thousands camped out waiting to book). Fuel has been very scarce and more than $13.00 per gallon in some places. We have been told that fuel supplies should be better as of November 20th.
While assisting our Nazarenes and the community is a top priority, we also want to make sure that we can provide the level of safety and security necessary for incoming volunteers, while not further stressing the fragile infrastructure already in place.
If you would like to volunteer please fill out the following form and you will be contacted shortly.