Last November, Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines. Your generosity was overwhelming, helping us gather relief supplies immediately, including food, clothing, and toiletries. The boys and girls in our survivor care programs assembled supplies and prepared for a road trip. You provided an amazing opportunity for the children to be the hands and feet of this relief effort.
We also needed to locate two girls, Rose and Majel, who we had been unable to contact in our follow up efforts after the storm. They had previously lived in the Round Home, but were now reintegrated back into their communities. Our team set out to find them.
In a few weeks’ time, we had our van loaded up and ready to go. We quickly found Rose and made sure she was safe. But we still needed to find Majel, who now lives with her family in Leyte, one of the most severely affected regions of the Philippines.
Along the way, we made stops to connect with those who needed help, and to deliver supplies.
After days of travel, we finally found Majel. She and her mother took us to their home – or what remained of it. We quickly formed a plan with Majel and her family, giving them the assistance they needed to start rebuilding their home and their lives. There is hope again.
For the children in our survivor care programs who participated, this trip was undeniably therapeutic. They have had their own traumas of hunger, brutality, helplessness, powerlessness. They, like many of the victims of Typhoon Haiyan, know grief and loss. Being in a position to help is empowering as they realize that if they are able to help others, then they can also help themselves. Empathy is powerfully healing – and we can’t thank you enough for the empathy you, our supporters, have modeled for the children.
…and sustain this journey with children towards recovery.