NEWS FROM CEBU
I thought it was about time to write some more about what’s happening here with us, as the typhoon that ripped through the central Philippines made destruction everywhere. Maybe you are following us on Facebook, but anyway, I want to put it “down on paper”. We were lucky not to be in the typhoon’s path, but the heavy winds, being in the outskirts of the typhoon was heavy enough to blow the roof off our gym area and branches 20 cm thick breaking like matches. It was a bit scary, but then when we heard what happened in Tacloban and further north on our island, then the damage at our place was minimal! Since the typhoon hit, we have made many trips up north with aid.
In the photo: 2 truck drivers, then Flemming, Grant from Canada, Gabriel and Jenny, Marie, Elisabet, Abi and a Spanish friend Rafael.
What a TEAM!
On Dec. 7-8 we had a trip up to Camoboan, Tabogon with 12 tons of aid. We distributed this aid to 250 families. We had to rent 2 large trucks and it took 4 hours to drive up there. With a normal car it takes about 2 ½ hours. Our friend Sally Kelly, had prepared a large tent to keep the goods overnight. We started at 8am giving out the aid packages, and it took 2 hours. It was very well organized, as she and her team had invited these families by name so that it was the needy who received the aid.
There were 55 kilos of goods, 20 kilos was a jerry can with drinking water, 10 kilos rice, canned foods, coffee, sugar, oil, vinegar, soysauce, rubbing alcohol for hand sanitization, hammer, saw, nails, tarps, rope, lamp and kerosene and a large bucket so they can gather rain water for taking baths. The electricity is still out, so water is not being pumped in to their areas. Life is not easy for them.
It is so nice to have someone like Sally Kelly from Sea Turtle Lagoon Resort that we can work together with. She is such an anchor there, always ready to help coordinate and guide us in how to bring the aid to the people. She has opened her beautiful resort for all our aid workers and has helped us identify the people who are in dire need of help. So it is good and positive that we have found the right people to work together with and also the right area – not a city of tens of thousands of people, but village folks who are just as bad hit as the others. They lost their homes and their livelihood, and we are now starting to help them build it up again.
It was so encouraging to see this little house, all new, that was built next to the ruins of their former home. It is houses similar to this we are going to start building for them on Monday. We will add a small kitchen through, so they don’t have to cook on the ground outside.We have so far identified 15 families who are bad off, and are hiring a team of carpenters to build the houses. It is important that these families have a place to call their own. Many are scattered around living with people who want to help or with their own families where they still have a house. When we have completed building 15 houses, then we will choose another 15 families we will help. It’s a nice and meaningful Christmas season for us, that’s for sure. A Season of Giving!
We have given a large chain saw for the cleaning up of the areas – many houses are buried under large trees that have fallen down. It is a miracle that no one lost their lives in this area when you see how devastated it has been.
So as you see, we are plenty busy, and on top of it, Flemming and Elisabet perform for kids in a mall on the week-ends now up to Christmas. It is fun, and they love being Santas – happy grandparents making kids happy!
And with this we wish you a lovely Christmas Season.
Lots of love!
Elisabet, Flemming, Gabe, Marie, Jenny, Grant and Abi
RISE ABOVE CEBU
If you want to be part of the housing project, you can send your donation through this link: https://riseabove-cebu.org/donate/