December 4, 2013

Twenty Days After: Post-Haiyan Lives at Tacloban

The highways are already cleaned up. The debris in the pictures are from the coastal streets especially Magallanes and the one by the public market. Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation is conducting a “cash for work” program. People—around 6000 of them—are paid P500 a day. They shoveled dirt, put them on a fan’s guard—dragged them on the highway, where the garbage truck picked them up. The cleaning was unnecessarily meticulous. But it was the intention of the foundation to provide jobs to those who decided to stay in their beloved city. The market is alive despite the price hikes. There is a visible, […]
December 8, 2013

Palompon after Yolanda (Haiyan)

  In one of the rooms at Palompon Elementary School, these words were framed: Nobyembre Paglilingkod | Pagmamalasakit Ang pagmamalasakit at paglilingkod ay kusang pagbibigay ng ating sariling kakayahan na maaaring material, moral, at ispiritwal sa ating kapwa lalo na sa mga kapus-palad at nangangailangan. 
December 17, 2013

Project Rebuild: Sending Christmas to Bantayan Island

Last Sunday, I headed to Bantayan Island, located in northern Cebu, at three in the morning to give the P32, 000 cash donations and little gifts for the kids I would surely meet along the way. Bantayan Island is the first site of our modest Project Rebuild, an initiative to support livelihood projects, provide cash gifts to the poorest of the poor, and wrap a little  Christmas joy for the kids. Project Rebuild sponsored two small boats (P6 000 each ) through the Bantayan Back to Sea Project. (Check this link to see the post dedicated for Project Rebuild: Post by Bantayan Back […]
January 1, 2014

Visiting the Tent City Before 2013 Ends

Yesterday, we visited the Tent City at Cebu South Road Properties where some of the survivors of the Super Typhoon Yolanda took refuge. Temporarily, I hope. Chad and I personally selected the toys at Carbon, the biggest and cheapest market in Cebu. We argued, deliberated, and finally agreed on the toys that we should buy for the kids. We asked some teachers at iTalk, an online school where I work, to help us wrap them as we visited and distributed cash gifts and little joys to the kids in northern Cebu. A separate entry is dedicated for each town that […]