Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19

by Asia America Initiative
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19
Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19

Since January 2020, thousands of families in the Philippines have been displaced by inrcease in local and regional volcano activity which has created non-stop rain patterns and dangerous air pollution in the Southeast Asian "Ring of Fire." In addition to the Taal and Bulusan volcanoes, numerous eruptions have occurred in neighboring Indonesia. These natural disasers have created tropical storms, fires, and floods,with relief efforts complicated by Covid-19 pandemic infections. Asia America Initiative and our partners are providing emergency food, water, tarp shelters, blankets, hygiene, face masks, and basic health care items for more than 2,000 displaced families and first-responders. We have provided 4 tons of relief supplies. Our GlobalGiving partners' donations have assisted AAI to continue our interventions in affected communities to provide aid to the homeless.

In March 2022, the Taal volcano erupted once again. And in June 2022, the Bulusan Volcano began erupting, also near the capital region of Luzon island in the  Philippines.  Explosive lava activity continues. On June 10, the Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) Tokyo warned about a volcanic ash plume that rose up to estimated 17000 ft (5200 m) altitude, with a large cloud of ash moving in a westerly direction. In fact, since January 2020, the Taal Volcano erupted affecting over 502,500 people. The Philippine government estimated 73,000 school-age children were displaced among 146,992 persons in temporary shelters in 489 evacuation centers. Fresh food, clean water, and shelter materials are still in short supply. The volcanic ash high in earth's altitude has created unusual year-long heavy rain and flooding, especially in the Capiz, Visayas and Jolo, Mindanao areas where numerous AAI "peace through development" programs are based.  Many roads are flood damaged. Worse, many other areas are affected by the COVID-19 virus with little to no hygiene or adequate medical supplies to protect aid workers.

Asia America Initiative is working with local leaders, community organizations, school teachers, police, and firefighters to deliver urgently needed goods and services to families who cannot return to their homes. We have already delivered four tons of food, blankets, and hygiene supplies. We are also preparing to send support for an additional 2,000 families (or 10,000 adults and children) who are homeless in especially hard-to-reach areas in Visayas and Mindanao regions.

Because many volcanoes are active across the Pacific Ocean Ring of Fire, Asia America Initiative is committed to long-term humanitarian relief to at least 5,000 displaced families. We are sending face masks and sterile gloves to firefighters and professional health workers. Relief supplies from the US, including food and hygiene items, will be sent to the Philippines to be distributed to refugees in shelters and health centers. Donations help us to acquire emergency supplies to send to affected communities.

 

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In December 2021, massive Super Typhoon Rai/ Odette, battered the central islands of the Philippines with thousands of houses destroyed, more than 380,000 families were displaced amounting to more than 1,500,000 people. During Christmas week, Asia America Initiative and partner organizations began delivering relief supplies in areas outside of Cebu City.  We targeted communities who lacked assistance from international and national organizations.  Mobilizing convoys of trucks and jeeps filled with good, water, blankets and hygiene supplies were hampered by destroyed roads and bridges. Making matters more difficult, a rapidly-spreading Covid-19 outbreak threatened flood vicims and relief workers.

We are happy to report that thanks to the generous logistics support of IPI Corporation, which has headquarters in Cebu, we were able to transport our volunteers led Ms. Lourdes who have been able to provide life-saving aid to more than 50,000 people in the Cebu and Bohol island areas.  Among the ruins of uprooted trees, downed power lines and the debris of flattened wooden houses, AAI and IPI teams set up distribution stations along the roads near villages where lines of family heads and the elderly patiently waited for the sacks of food, bottles of water and hygiene supplies.  "We did not expect such generosity," said Mrs. Octavio, in Site 8 of Banhigan Badian village in Cebu Province. " Our home was smashed by high winds in the storm and our farm fields are now barren.  We did not know if anyone realized that we are alive and need the most basic items for survival."                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         A more difficult area to reach was the Surigao area in the remote northeastern coastal area of the Philippines' Mindanao region.  Our volunteers, who originated largely from Zamboanga in the very southern-most area of  Mindanao were organized by Dr. Yolanda woprking out of her home in California. We began a second aid convoy immediately after the  New Year, with support from rice merchants and fish processing centers in Zamboanga and agricultural cooperatives in the Davao area. 

Our "caravan" of vehicles is delivering much-needed relief to the hardest hit, most difficult areas. The group traveled from Zamboanga across treacherous mountain roads to the province of Surigao del Norte.  Our outreach area is the Caraga Region, where 500,000 inhabitants include at least 20 percent tribal peoples who usually remain isolated from the outside world.  In addition, armed rebel groups roam the area in violent bands of the New People's Army.  In addition, a sizable number of our volunteers are Muslims who have brotherly relations with their Christian first-response colleagues, but are feared by the Christian Filipinos and tribal peoples in Caraga.

Asia America Initiative has found that the best way to overcome biases and fear is to have everyone working together in performing acts of kindness. The Relief  Aid caravan is supported by local leaders, community organizations, police, and firefighters to deliver urgently needed goods and services to families of all religions and ethnic groups who cannot return to their homes. A local mayor told us, "This is the first time locally that Filipinos from all ethnic and religious groups are rising above their cultural and language barriers because the enthusiasm caused by the relief caravan is contagious."

Our growing coalition of volunteers from all walks of life helped to make the ongoing relief caravan a humble but vital success. Today, Asia America Initiative and our partners continue to provide emergency food, water, tarp shelters, blankets, hygiene, face masks, and basic health care items for families. Due to destroyed farm fields and rising prices of all food items we intend to continue our aid deliveries through 2022.  We are very grateful for your support.

We have already delivered relief to close to 80,000 people. We are currently preparing a second caravan to carry supplies into the most remote areas that are being forgotten or are severely under-served, especially in hard-to-reach areas of Visayas and Mindanao.  We are grateful to all of our GlobalGiving donors.  We could not do this without you!

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Family receives package of food relief
Family receives package of food relief

Dear Friends, 

Because of your support, we were recently able to help another  community ravaged by non-stop typhoons and flooding in the Philippines.  This relief mission was in the area of Bata'an in the Luzon region where we assisted more than 500 families. The area was struck by storm Jolina in early September. We were able to reach out with local partners and provide relief that had already arrived in Manila in preparation for the Typhoon season. Our success has been rooted in our ability to forecast possible events and preposition relief goods to supply to an extensive network of local partners and volunteers. Please know, your contributions make a big difference and are the reason we are able to proactively do it this way. 

After the flooding subsides, shelter, clean water, food, and hygiene supplies are the focus. The faster refugees are stabilized after a disaster, the better. We try to keep people in a positive frame of mind. 

Asia America Initiative is working with local leaders, community organizations, police, and firefighters to deliver urgently needed goods and services to at least 500 families who cannot return to their homes. We have already delivered four tons of food, blankets, and hygiene supplies. We are also continuously packing and sending support for an additional 2,000 families (or 10,000 adults and children) who are homeless in especially hard-to-reach areas in Visayas and Mindanao regions.

Relief supplies from the US, including food and hygiene items, will be sent to the Philippines to be distributed to refugee camps and health centers. Your donation will help us to acquire emergency supplies to send to affected communities and instill hope.

If you would like to add to your support, please click on the link below. We are accepting donations now to send needed supplies to AAI-supported communities in the weeks to come.

Thank you for helping those families who have become refugees.

Father and children receive food and hygiene items
Father and children receive food and hygiene items
Taking care of the vulnerable elderly population
Taking care of the vulnerable elderly population
Relief arriving, Cheerios always welcome
Relief arriving, Cheerios always welcome
Rescuing people from flooded areas
Rescuing people from flooded areas
Volunteers are our heroes
Volunteers are our heroes
Relief goods delivery - local style
Relief goods delivery - local style
Mom and son receive food in makeshift shelter
Mom and son receive food in makeshift shelter

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AAI 2020 Relief distribution event
AAI 2020 Relief distribution event

In January 2020, 700,000 thousand people in the Philippines were displaced by Taal Volcano, in addition to many others affected by typhoons, fires, floods, and COVID19. Asia America Initiative and our partners provided emergency food, water, tarp shelters, blankets, hygiene, face masks, and basic health care items for 2,000 displaced families and around 100 first response workers and volunteers. Your donation was critical in bringing hope to those affected.

In the past few weeks, the Taal Volcano has become active again. Hundreds of earthquakes and tremors are occurring as steam and noxious gasses are being emitted. Local populations are planning for possible evacuation. Currently, there is increased earthquake activity in the general region that can generate flooding tides or tsunamis. The 2021 Typhoon season is just beginning in the Philippines and the region has already experienced 2 tropical storms and 1 Category 5 super typhoon!

AAI is continuing to send support  for 2,000 families or 10,000 adults and children.

Now is the time to prepare for inevitable crises in the Philippines. Transportation takes at least two mo nths to ship supplies by ocean freight from the United States. We are pre-positioning relief aid in Manila before the need is critical in nearby provinces and the regions of Visayas and Mindanao. We will be ready to distribute supplies to numerous internally displaced persons camps, schools, and health centers. 

With Covid19 protocols in mind, we will continue to provide face masks, plastic face sbields  and sterile gloves to more than 300 firefighters and professional health workers. AAI has been very careful to maintain sanitary practices regarding donations and we provide masks, gloves, and plenty of antibacterial gel to our staff, volunteers, and partner frst responders assisting with the distribution of relief aid.

AAI’s mission is to help build, educate, and empower local communities through a bottom-up approach. We facilitate community engagement regardless of religion. Our presence is in some of the poorest and most dangerous places for outsiders. Open communications with local communities ensure they are not forgotten and they are not alone. By going beyond humanitarian intervention, our network of support promotes peace and development. Our success is achieved through trust based on consistent cooperation. 

If you would like to add to your support, we are gathering donations to send emergency supplies and food to affected communities in June and July. Your donations make it all possible. Thank you.

Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19

Gratefully, Wishing you peace,

 

Albert Santoli

Director, Asia America Initiative

Buckets can be for washing, carrying, or sitting
Buckets can be for washing, carrying, or sitting
We are sending donated clothing from Hershey's
We are sending donated clothing from Hershey's
Care Kits created by volunteers for the homeless
Care Kits created by volunteers for the homeless
Pallets of Relief prepared for shipping
Pallets of Relief prepared for shipping
Assisting displaced children after flooding
Assisting displaced children after flooding
AAI staff provide relief w/ local responders
AAI staff provide relief w/ local responders
Soap, toys, and books for displaced children
Soap, toys, and books for displaced children

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Homes destroyed by storm surge
Homes destroyed by storm surge

On January 21, scores of wood-frame homes built on the shoreline of southern Mindanao were knocked down after a storm surge caused by a large earthquake in the nearby sea. Hundreds of families were displaced to local shelters after the calamity. Asia America Initiative is working with local leaders and community organizations, police, and firefighters to deliver urgently needed goods and services to these newly displaced families who cannot return to their homes. 

These traditional wooden homes are built and used by fishermen in their livelihood trade on what is called the foreshore area of the shoreline. (In the surf!) This is like shopkeeper living above the store with their families. These structures are built on the leeward side of the island in a usuallysafe port area. Only during unusual circumstances, such as this nearby radiating earthquake or relentless storms of  high magnitude, would these homes be at risk. The families affected have now lost their main source of income as well. 

AAI and local partners, such as the local fire department and school geachers joined our exended team.  Volunteers gave 200 families a 5-gallon water jug and 1 week's worth of food and hygiene supplies for 1,000 people.

Beginning in January 2020, thousands of families in the Philippines have been displaced by Taal Volcano, typhoons, fires, floods, and are under risk of new straizns of Covid19. Overall, Asia America Initiative and our partners are providing emergency food, water, tarp shelters, blankets, hygiene, face masks, and basic health care items for 2,000 displaced families and first response workers. We have provided 4 tons of relief supplies.

Your previous donation has assisted us in affected communities and inspires hope for the homeless. Thank you!

If you would like to continue your support, please click the link to our project page. 

Aid to Refugees of Taal Volcano, Floods, COVID-19

Thank you, 

Wishing you peace, 

Albert Santoli

 

Looking at the aftermath of the storm surge
Looking at the aftermath of the storm surge
Families try to salvage belongings
Families try to salvage belongings
Families evacuate to shelter as houses collapse
Families evacuate to shelter as houses collapse
Children are welcomed at the evac center
Children are welcomed at the evac center
A baby is carried to shelter
A baby is carried to shelter
Homes slip into the sea
Homes slip into the sea
Firefighters bring water to the distribution event
Firefighters bring water to the distribution event
AAI and partners assist families in need
AAI and partners assist families in need
AAI and volunteers work to help families affected
AAI and volunteers work to help families affected
Local Firefighters transport AAI relief supplies
Local Firefighters transport AAI relief supplies

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Organization Information

Asia America Initiative

Location: Washington, DC - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Albert Santoli
Washington, DC United States
$13,911 raised of $18,000 goal
 
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$4,089 to go
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