Trust provides faster support to Filipinos

TRACY MILES
Last updated 14:30 08/01/2014
hopevale trust
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SPEED: The Hopevale Trust has been able to get to remote villages more quickly than the big aid organisations.
hopevale trust
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TOWN IN PIECES: The wrecked library building in Hernani, hours after Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan hit.
hopevale trust
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LOSS: Two hundred thousand people died in Hernani alone while 2000 are believed missing.

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The Hopevale Trust is continuing to raise money for the typhoon devastated Philippines.

Wilson St Baptist Church's multicultural ministry team leader Jonan Castillon, who was a pastor in the Philippines, said it was hoped the trust could raise money to help buy small boats to help Filipino fishermen recover their livelihoods.

Typhoon Haiyan, known in the Philippines as Typhoon Yolanda was the deadliest Philippine typhoon on record, killing at least 6069 people in that country alone.

Not only did it take lives and destroy homes, it also smashed up fishing boats and stripped coconut trees, two sources of income for Filipinos.

The Hopevale Trust, of which Timaru resident Ross Waugh is the trustee, has been bypassing the Filipino bureaucracy that was holding up help from the big international aid organisations, and using contacts in remote places to get aid more directly to people.

Mr Castillon is documenting their efforts on multicultural response.com. Just before Christmas he received photos from Hernani, recording the arrival and distribution of aid.

A town of Eastern Samar province with 8000 people, Hernani was one of the towns that suffered Typhoon Yolanda's fury on its first landfall on November 8.

"It was a long and hard journey for our contacts in Cebu to bring to Hernani town the relief goods that were bought through the funds that Hopevale Trust sent."

Funds given from around New Zealand went to help the devastated town.

"Our donation was lumped along with other gifts to maximise delivery."

At least 200 are believed dead in Hernani, according to social news network Rappler. About 2000 are said to be missing.

"Most of the folks in villages of Hernani will be spending Christmas in tent houses."

Two months on, Filipinos are focusing more on finding means to restart their livelihoods. Rebuilding homes will come later.

"Hernani and other towns have started to rebuild their lives with the help of private and government organisations. Hopevale Trust plans to continue raising additional money."

SOUTH CANTERBURY HERALD

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- South Canterbury

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