2013 TYPHOON RELIEF
November 8th, 2013 – 4:40AM
Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda makes 1st landfall over Guiuan, Eastern Samar, Philippines
November 8th, 2013 – 7:00AM
Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda makes 2nd landfall over Tolosa, Leyte, Philippines
Action Humanitarian is the culmination of these and numerous other events. The following Sunday a group of three concerned individuals met to discuss a potential response to the devastating natural disaster. 5 Days later a multidisciplinary team of 14 members assembled en route to the Philippines. This team consisted of medical professionals and a chain-saw outfitted reconstruction element. Members volunteered for this assignment and came from Utah and Idaho. Many were prior LDS missionaries in the Philippines and some served on the affected Islands of Leyte and Samar.
As our ferry from Cebu approached Ormoc City damage was clearly visible as the passengers hushed in astonishment. The transportation terminals, local market and surrounding structures were missing there entire roofs, debri and garbage was littered everywhere, glass was shattered, power lines wrapped like birds’ nests on the ground, children swinging on downed lines in their Tarzan imitations.
We had multiple ventures to the east side of Leyte. This is where the most severe devastation had occurred and the proximity to the sea was the prime culprit. The sea-side communities of Tacloban, Tanauan and Tolosa had received a major storm surge that decimated low-lying structures. Mug bogs filled with shattered coco trees and leaves, scattered household possessions, thick black mud, and smelled of decomposing flesh. The sites in these areas were comparable to apocalyptic scenes normally reserved for computer generated graphics seen in large budget Hollywood movies.
Coordination with Charity Vision International and donations from multiple gracious local businesses were vital in the success of the mission.
7 days later the team had completed 5,000 patient encounters and processed hundreds of damaged coco trees were processed and removed from homes and other structures.
Area of operations included Ormoc, Albuera, Isabel, Capoocan, Carigara, Tolosa, Tanauan and Dulag. Local partners included the Seagull Disaster Response Team, local medical professionals, and LDS Church leadership.