By Relief Teams from the Philippines and Formosa (Taiwan)
(Originally in English and Chinese)
On December 2, 2012, Typhoon Bopha (locally known as Pablo) struck Mindanao, Philippines with devastating force, and remained in the country for about 5 days. Thousands of homes, business structures, and big trees collapsed due to the force of the tornadoes and flashfloods brought by the typhoon. At least 1,067 persons lost their lives.
Upon hearing the sad news, Supreme Master Ching Hai immediately sent US$60,000 and asked our Association members to render help and distribute relief supplies to those most in need.
Due to the fallen trees and huge rocks that blocked the roads, they remained impassable for several days. By December 16, four Formosan (Taiwanese), and three Aulacese (Vietnamese) Association members joined our local member and headed to the Compostela Valley Province, one of the hardest hit areas, where, as of December 13, more than 440 persons lost their lives.
Going around the area, one could see the heartbreaking sight of damaged banana and coconut plantations and roads, collapsed houses, gymnasiums, and business establishments.
After talking to Mr. Marlon Esperanza, the Provincial Information Officer, our team decided to give priority to the town of New Bataan, which had the most casualties and about 10,562 affected families. The town was still experiencing continuous rainfall and power interruption. Ms. Evelyn Orquiza, a social welfare aid representative, lovingly assisted the team throughout the process.
With the kind help of some evacuees, about 11,000 relief packs were packed and distributed to the victims inside four evacuation centers and to 16 villages or barangays: Andap, Bantacan, Batinao, Cabinuangan, Camalangan, Cogonon, Fatima, Kahayag, Katipunan, Magangit, Magsaysay, Manurigao, Pagsabangan, Panag, San Roque, and Tandawan. Each relief pack contained rice, salt, sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, cooking oil, and laundry detergent. Also included in each pack were vegan cookies for the children. The recipients received the goods gratefully and happily.
As some villages roads were obstructed, the army used four helicopters to distribute the relief food to people who were really in need and to convey love from Master. The soldier told our team members that the families there regard The Supreme Master Ching Hai kindly and they are very grateful for Her help and love. One elderly woman told us that after the typhoon, she kept on praying to God. When she saw our team, she knew that God had answered her prayer.
The Municipal Mayor of New Bataan, Honorable Lorenzo L. Balbin, Jr., conveyed his gratitude to Master through a heartfelt letter (see following letter).
Our team is in deep gratitude to our dear Master for the opportunity to assist our brethren in their time of need. We pray for all those affected by the typhoon to have a quick return to their normal day-to-day lives. May events such as these awaken people to turn to a compassionate lifestyle for a disaster-free world.
Expenditures by Supreme Master Ching Hai
for Typhoon Relief Work in Southern Philippines
|Description||Amount (PHP Peso)||Receipt|
|34,950 kilograms of rice||950,480||A|
|Necessities (vinegar, sugar, salt, soy sauce, and laundry detergent)||959,463||B|
|Other expenses (transportation, gas and bags)||87,638||D|
Throughout the relief operation, the team members paid for their transportation and accommodations, which came to a total of US$2,320