On November 8th, Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) wiped out about 55 provinces in the mid Philippines. This tragic event has left thousands dead and even more injured and missing. At 150-170 mph, the winds hit the land and dramatically blew through the city of Tacloban and Leyte. The buildings and the homes tried to fight the winds and unfortunately lost the battle. The city of Tacloban nearly drowned in the tropical storm and had the most fatalities at about 2,000 people. Once the news about the typhoon hit the news channels I sat on my couch with my eyes glued to the television of the tragedy that took place on the other side of the world from me. I was lost for words and worry for the safety of everyone in the Philippines took over me.
I have been lucky enough to have visited the Philippines about 3-4 times in my childhood. I have never been anywhere so beautiful and life changing ever before. To see how others live when the resources aren’t attainable or sanitary as it is for us in America is astonishing. The adults, and especially the children, have the biggest smile on their faces from their appreciation of everything they have rather than dwell on what they don’t. In an instant one realizes that life isn’t about the materialistic items in life that makes you happy. I can remember as a child going to the beaches and the rivers and just thinking how breathtaking these sites were. Just thinking of those sites ruined forms tears in my eyes.
I couldn’t just sit back while the people in the Philippines were scrounging for resources. I needed to do something, and I needed to do it fast. I researched which organization would be able to help the country the most and ended up teaming with the American Red Cross of Sacramento. The second task was for me to find a club on campus that would be able to help me get my relief efforts for the Philippines rolling, and I have the ECOS club to thank for that. Kristine Gilbert, who is also a professor here at Sierra College helped facilitate the club and I in our actions and had a table ready and set up for us within days.
With the help of the amazing and supportive faculty and students the turnout of the fundraiser was phenomenal. Sierra College was able to raise $1,322.34. I can honestly say without the help of the campus this fundraiser wouldn’t have possible. We all have a voice and once we all start using it in a way that can help someone other than ourselves, collectively we can make a difference in this world.
Donating even a dollar is helpful in getting food and clean water to them. Here’s the link to contribute to the typhoon relief: www.redcross.org.ph/donate