Our organization, Malinis-USA Association, Inc. is a non-profit community organization which caters to the needs and well-being of our community here in the US and in our home town in the Philippines, Barangay Malinis, Lemery, Batangas. Community service is the main goal of the organization which includes spearheading different projects in our barangay like chapel reconstructions, sports and recreation, fiesta, and financial aid to support different community programs.
Taal Volcano located in the middle of the Taal Lake in the province of Batangas, is one of the world’s smallest volcanoes and was the second most active volcano in the Philippines. It is one of the most picturesque views in the Philippines which draws many tourists for its scenic setting in a lake.
On January 12, 2020, Sunday, Taal Volcano belched steam, ash and rocks forcing locals to evacuate for safety under difficult conditions of poor visibility and lack of transportation. Clouds of ash blew far north, reaching Manila and causing the shut down of its main airport with flights temporarily suspended.
Neighboring towns within the 14-kilometer danger zone which includes our town of Lemery, Agoncillo, San Nicolas, Laurel, Taal among others have been completely covered with ash. Nearly 800 volcanic earthquakes were recorded within the danger zone, indicating “intense seismic activity (that) likely signifies continuous magmatic intrusion beneath” according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs).
More than 70,000 people have been evacuated since the volcano began spewing clouds of ash, steam and gas. Many homes have been destroyed by the quakes and ashfall. Agricultural crops and livestock were destroyed which were the main source of living of our kababayans there. Schools and businesses were shut down and a total lockdown was mandated in these towns neighboring the volcano island.
High-risk areas within a 14-km (9-mile) radius of the volcano’s main crater have remained strictly off-limits to people. Due to the lockdown, our fellow kababayans are not allowed to go back to their homes. They seek refuge in evacuation centers, schools and churches. Majority do not have decent sleeping conditions and although some local government units, private sectors and concerned citizens have offered help in providing relief goods, it is not enough for their nourishment.
The volcano alert level remains at 4, just a notch below the highest, which means that “hazardous explosive eruption is possible within hours to days”.
We pray that we can rise up and this calamity will end soon to allow our kababayans to return back to their homes, though it will take a long time to go back to their normal lives.
We appreciate your support in our advocacy to be of service to our kababayans. Our families back home need our help now for their survival and recovery…. Your contribution will go a long way in helping them move forward. Thank you and may God continue to bless your kind heart…
MALINIS-USA ASSOCIATION, INC.
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