| Written by CSWCD

typhoon sendong emergency response appeal

The CSWCD has launched the Typhoon Sendong Emergency Response Appeal entitled “PAGDAMAY ANG REGALO NATIN NGAYONG PASKO” to show our solidarity with the typhoon Sendong survivors.We appealed for your support and many of you so generously rose to the challenge. You showed your compassion in different ways. Allow us therefore to share with you a short update on the progress of our campaign to date, as our way of showing our gratitude to each of you.

Joint Oxfam-CSWCD volunteer mobilization for repacking of emergency hygiene kits:

Oxfam approached the CSWCD for assistance in their emergency response, specifically in volunteer mobilization and hosting the repacking operations on December 22. We launched an urgent call for volunteers mainly thru Facebook and texting and readied our classrooms and corridors for the relief goods to be supplied by Oxfam. We were overwhelmed by the turnout — more than 400 highly spirited volunteers came, working in three 6-hour shifts from 6am to 11pm. After almost 18 hours of untiring work, we were able to assemble 2,981 emergency hygiene kits (EHKs). Each kit, packed in a colorful reusable bag, contains 2 sleeping mats (banig), 2 blankets, 1 mosquito net, 10 bath soaps, 7 detergent bars, 1 tube of toothpaste, 5 toothbrushes, 3 packs of sanitary pads, 6 briefs and 6 panties (for children and adults). These will be distributed to households together with a jerry can and potty.

The hygiene kits are a part of a bigger emergency response spearheaded by the Humanitarian Response Consortium, a consortium of 5 local NGOs (A Single Drop for Safe Water Inc, Balay Rehab Center, Kadtuntaya Foundation, Peoples’ Disaster Risk Reduction Network (formerly PDRN), the Rural Development Institute of Sultan Kudarat) and Oxfam. As a whole, they aim to assist 10,000 families (out of the more than 25,000 families that have been directly affected in terms of loss of homes, employment, etc.) in CDO, Iligan City and adjacent areas.

The reactions of the volunteers yesterday were very heartening – there was so much energy and joy while they were counting, packing, checking for quality control, labeling, and lifting the goods, and in the end, taking part in a long human chain that was formed to move the kits from the 2nd floor down to the ground floor. By mid-morning, one of the Oxfam staff commented on the volunteers: “They’re working so fast, how do we slow them down?!” Many were impressed at the quantity and quality of the goods, and at the orderly system instituted. The place was abuzz, even verging on the chaotic, but there was nary a negative comment or feedback from the volunteers. Each one was just there share their time and be useful. Perhaps, it also helped that, thanks to Oxfam, there were mandated breaks and sufficient food and drinks for the volunteers. Even the CSWCD faculty cannot help but be amazed and overjoyed at the sheer number of volunteers who turned up (somebody commented: “we have a flood of volunteers!”) despite the very short notice (only 2 nights and 1 day) with the help of Facebook and other social media.

CSWCD-CDP Joint Appeal for Donations:

Simultaneously with the call for volunteers, the CSWCD supported the appeal for donations of the Center for Disaster Preparedness. Since Dec 21, we have received donated goods (mainly clothes, canned goods and water) and some cash assistance. The goods have already been sorted out and placed in cartons, ready for shipment when we find free transport. The CDP is coordinating with the Office of Civil Defense, and our donated good are already on their list of agencies seeking transport assistance. We hope to send them out the week after Christmas.

We will continue to receive goods so please inform potential donors that they can still bring these to the CSWCD. These will be classified and packed tentatively Monday and Tuesday next week so anyone who wants to help with these are most welcome. Please wait for further announcements from the CDP and the CSWCD regarding this.

Again, we thank each and every volunteer and donor who showed their support in whatever way they can. Oxfam also extends its gratitude to all of you. Wishing all of us a truly meaningful and happy Christmas…

Click here for more photos.