In November of 2013, Typhoon Yolanda hit the Philippines with terrible results. It was the worst typhoon in the country's history and the 4thlargest on record. It took the lives of over 6,000 people and did over $800,000,000.00 in damage to the infrastructure of an already poor country. Since then, money and supplies have been coming in from all around the world, but what the people of PI desperately need are able bodied volunteers to help rebuild infrastructure.
The Missouri Baptist Disaster Relief team has organized two six man groups for the 2013 Northern Cebu Island Typhoon Response - Gibitngil Recovery. This is an organization that takes trained citizens to disaster locations and coordinates their labor and talents to relieve and rebuild the community. This project would focus on the elementary school, which is the center of the community and is the main source of rain drain water. We will be replacing tin sheet roofing and gutters on the principal's office and teacher's room plus the middle section of the building that houses the lower grades (K-Grade 4). The grade 5 and 6 building will need extensive reconstruction due to damage from the typhoon in the form of rafters tin and determining the integrity of the hollow block walls that are standing. Other possible work sites would be homes of widows, elderly and single mothers who have no family members to help with the recovery. Keep in mind that we will have no running water, no electricity, no power tools and very little shelter during our time there.
I have a history with this particular team - I served in Joplin with them in 2010. I also have a history with the Philippines. I was deployed there with the Marines, worked with the Filipino military and I received jungle survival and tactics training both there and in Okinawa. To cut to the chase, I can hack the conditions there (extremely hot and humid, no electricity, no running water).
What you can do to help
The biggest way others can help me is to donate supplies or monetary funds towards my 16 day trip. The biggest need in the Philippines right now is hands on the ground. They have food, clothes, drinking water sent to them in massive amounts, but what they need is people on the ground to organize the distribution of those items and to help rebuild their communities. Not everyone can up and leave for 16 days and serve in the current conditions of this area. I count myself lucky that I have a job and a background that lends itself to this type of work. I would love if you would partner with me in this opportunity!
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