On September 30, I was supposed to travel to the Philippines to check on my own development projects in Iligan City, Philippines and to connect with Filipino nongovernmental groups that work with the Global Coalition for Humanitarian Efforts-Philippines. Unfortunately, several typhoons, Ketsana and Parma hit the Philippines, one severe flood after another that resulted in the worst flood in decades, according to the New York Times.
So I decided to stay in Chicago and help with fundraising efforts in the US. I contacted the local Chicago press and tried to get publicity and support from Filipino Americans and other supporters to donate. In fact, the Global Coalition is fundraising to raise contributions to cover the cost of a shipping container worth $50,000 or 300,000 fortified meals to the Philippines to help provide immediate relief to Filipino disaster victims in need.
You can donate any amount through the Global Coalition website secured PayPal page or mail your check or money order to: Global Coalition for Humanitarian Efforts-Philippines, 2719 N. Halsted Street, C-1, Chicago, IL 60614.
I’m also very pleasantly surprised by the outpouring of Filipino Americans and others to help out the flood victims. A friend sent me a link to Moongirl’s blog that listed many avenues and outpouring of support.
I also found another Google listing of supporters to help flood victims created by Franklin Naval. This is really incredible that Filipino diaspora is responding to the humanitarian crisis in the Philippines.
Is this the beginning of an involved Filipino diaspora that will help rebuilding efforts there? I really hope so! I hope that the interest and enthusiasm to help will not wane and continue with the much needed rebuilding efforts there.
But what about the lessons of the huge tsunami that hit Thailand in 2004? Did support continue to help the rebuilding efforts there? Or the lessons of Hurricane Katrina in 2005? How are the continuing rebuilding efforts there? Perhaps I am optimistic that Filipino diaspora will indeed continue to show such an outpouring of support to help beyond these immediate relief efforts.