The Filipino nation continues to show unified action in simultaneous relief campaigns to provide aid to the victims of the Taal Volcano eruption even amidst heightened alert for more volcanic activity.
As if telling the world, “In times of disaster we do not choose whom to help. We treat each other as families. We are brave enough to face difficulties!” – these various organizations around the Philippines have addressed the needs of both people and animal evacuees fleeing from their homesteads in and around the active volcano in Batangas province.
Non-government organizations partnered with state agencies to conduct rescue missions of both people and animals, university communities gathered donations of basic living necessities to send to affected areas, church doors opened to now-homeless people, and more concerted efforts are snowballing among Pinoys, once again showcasing the cultural bayanihan spirit of carrying each other’s burdens.
Here are some of the noteworthy efforts by both private and public groups helping Taal Volcano eruption victims:
Philippine Coast Guard rescues the rescuers of animals
The Philippine Coast Guard rescued volunteers of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) who were left on Taal island by their boat captain after a miscommunication ensued, revealed PETA spokesperson Jana Sevilla. PETA went to the site to rescue animals reported stranded after people were evacuated.
Philippines’ big three schools – UP, Ateneo, La Salle communities gather and send support
Lasallians in Dasmarinas, Cavite, also affected by severe ash fall from Taal Volcano, gathered and sent support to the evacuees. Lasallians in Lipa, Antipolo, Manila, Greenhills, Alabang, Misamis, and more, are combining efforts to provide aid in various ways.
Ateneo de Manila University’s Loyola schools have joined De La Salle Lipa in providing aid to evacuees.
The University of the Philippines System’s 6 constituent universities across the country are conducting relief efforts, with the celebrated UP Fighting Maroons and UP alumni of Nowhere to Go But UP leading the relief drive in UP Diliman.
Churches open doors to all faiths
Churches and seminaries, from the Cavite province which has been declared in a state of calamity, opened doors to evacuees from Batangas and set up relief centers across the province.
Cavite groups from the Couples for Christ and Youth For Peace Movement continue to conduct relief operations in different areas of Cavite that are housing Batangas evacuees who fled the affected areas.
Individuals have also provided help for the victims of Taal, among them Syrian vlogger Basel Manadil of The Hungry Syrian Wanderer who brought N95 masks and other goods to the victims, ordinary people on the streets who washed down cars and provided water, netizens on social media who used the platform to spread awareness and call for help.
Google has provided a consolidated map of the Taal Volcano evacuation centers for people to find help and send aid.
With reports from Blesilda dela Cruz and Angie Quadra Balibay.
SEND HELP to the victims of the Taal Volcano eruption, please.
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