So, the weekend I’m out of the country enjoying myself in Malaysia, a typhoon devastates Cagayan de Oro and other provinces. I was on BlackBerry Unlimited services with DiGi, a Malaysian provider, so I was able to read Twitter and keep up with the news. It didn’t quite hit home, though, until my friend Joel sent us some pictures over BBM.
I met Joel many years ago in Boracay. We go to the same church and are part of the same triathlon team, and I consider him one of the most level-headed sane guy friends a girl can ever find. He got married last year, and he and his wife Audrey relocated to CDO with her daughter, Nicole. According to Joel, there were so many business opportunites to be had in CDO and he was really excited to build a life there. They had just welcomed a baby daughter, Sandy, to their family a few weeks ago.
And then, Typhoon Sendong came.
Joel, Audrey, Nicole, and Sandy are fine, but the home they had so carefully made for themselves was brutally devastated in just a few hours of rain. And they’re not alone; many other CDO, Iligan, and Zamboanga residents escaped with just their lives — and some didn’t.
My friends and tri team are extending help to Joel and his family, but there is so much more to be done for others as well. If you’re still wondering how you can help, the Philippine Red Cross is accepting donations. You can also use your cellphone’s prepaid load or postpaid credit to send a donation. Text RED <AMOUNT> to 2899 (Globe) or 4143 (Smart). Denominations are 5/25/50/100/300/500/1000. You can also drop off donations in kind at any LBC branch nationwide. What people reallyneed now is clean drinking water.
Check out SendongRelief.org for more ways you can help. Natural disasters come at any time of the year, but this season is supposed to be a time of celebrating with loved ones and remembering that Christ was born to lay down his life for us. Let’s lay down our materialistic desires and donate now to save others’ lives.