Silenced By Typhoon Haiyan

I was supposed to update my blog on a weekly basis, or at least twice in a month, but my spirit was in its lowest since Typhoon Haiyan or Yolanda here in the Philippines happened. I cried almost everyday for two weeks just seeing the helpless faces of the typhoon victims  in the news or on social media. Thank goodness for all my countrymen who took the time to help in any way possible. I have never seen so many Filipinos who went out of their way just to extend their help.  May it be a big time entrepreneur or a couple of street children, every type of people from different walks of life took the time to help.

Thanks also to technology, one can also help whenever or wherever as long as there’s internet connection.  My family bought a number of these Kapamilya Shirts online, you see.  The proceeds of these shirts go directly to the typhoon relief funds.

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The Kapamilya shirt being sold by ABS-CBN, one of the biggest television networks here in the Philippines. The proceeds for the sale of these shirts go to the Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda relief fund. This is being sold for PhP 250 only.

My younger sister’s sister-in-law celebrated her birthday last year by paying her blessings forward. She can afford to have a big party but she opted not to celebrate her special day that way.  Instead, she posted an announcement on her Facebook account that along with her own donations, she will also be accepting food or clothing donations from her friends and relatives.  The positive response she got was overwhelming and I was happy for her and for those typhoon victims who received the help from her own personal efforts.

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She has collected a variety of food and clothing and boxes of bottled purified water.

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Ready for transport

The assistance from other nations were also very heartwarming, and one of the highlights, I may say. However, I share the same sentiments that most of my fellow countrymen have – will all these monetary and material help be able to reach those who need it the most? Or will it AGAIN fall inside somebody else’s greedy pockets?

At the height of the realization of Haiyan’s aftermath, inspiring stories of act of kindness from here and abroad were constantly being told in the news and on Facebook or Twitter. However, stories of how food donations were being held and how bad politics were getting in the way did not go unnoticed either. I got to the point wherein I just skipped reading or listening to whatever is bad news. Knowing how conniving and scheming the politics in the Philippines is, I’m sure some of those bad stories were just sensationalized just to create bad publicity towards the present administration. I have big disappointments towards how our present administration  handled the typhoon situation as much as the next guy but if I, myself, witnessed an anomaly with how the donations were being distributed, I’d expose it because I wanted the victims to get the help that they rightfully deserve and NOT because I want to smear the reputation of someone in politics!

And, then, there was this issue between Senator Mar Roxas and the Tacloban City Mayor, Alfred Romualdez, that was caught on video.  Tacloban was the city that was hit by Haiyan the hardest, by the way. I’ve seen the video, which has gone viral for a while, wherein Mr. Roxas reiterated the need to “legalize” everything first before the assistance that Tacloban needed from the national government be put into action.   Mar Roxas was seen saying that the said legalization is needed mainly because the mayor of the city is a Romualdez and the president of the country is an Aquino.  The Romualdezes and the Aquinos have bad history way back, which majorly have something to do with the assassination of President Aquino’s father that happened in 1983.   Anyway, some blogger posted the said video and I took the time to read whatever was written therewith. I thought his reason for blogging about it was to expose how much of a brown-noser Senator Mar Roxas is or to expose who’s responsible for making the Tacloban typhoon victims wait for a week before they were able to get a taste of the overflowing food donations that were waiting and ready to be distributed from Day 3 of the typhoon’s aftermath. But, no, all he just wanted to talk about really was how such issue could have been avoided if only we said yes to charter change! Ugh!

Anyway, enough of the heavy.  I’ll make sure I’d write about something inspiring and lighter next time.  Reliving what had happened almost a couple of months ago is heartbreaking, to say the least.

At this point in time, let’s include in our prayers all the survivors of the typhoon, that they may be able to rise from the tragedy they went through.  It’s not about the donations anymore; it’s about how they can continue amid the loss of a loved one, friends, and source of living.

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