Surviving the Storm: Updates from the Philippines

May 10, 2022

On December 16, 2021, super-typhoon Rai struck the Philippines’ eastern islands, including Cebu: home to our partner, Cebu Skin Clinic. Destroying homes and businesses and power lines, the typhoon left thousands of people stranded, with no home to return to and no reliable sources of power or drinking water.

Just weeks before Christmas, Cebu Skin Clinic and its neighbors were thrown into darkness and uncertainty. But thanks to your generous response, they were not alone in the midst of disaster. 

With your help, we sent $25,000 to Cebu Skin Clinic in January to repair the clinic’s facilities and to help people impacted by the typhoon, including those living with leprosy.

Health assessments ALM

The church near Cebu Skin Clinic lost most of its roof in super-typhoon Rai.

Schieffelin's Machine

The Almasa family’s home was completely destroyed, but your gifts made it possible for them to rebuild!

Schieffelin's Machine

Thanks to your gifts, 27 households on Cebu repaired their homes.

Homes Disappear and Your Gifts Rebuild

Miguelio and Pina Almasa attended a church service the morning of December 16, and a few hours later they learned about the oncoming super-typhoon. “We were scared because our house is flood-prone. It’s in a low-lying area surrounded by huge trees that could fall on us with strong winds.” 

The Almasas took their three grandchildren and sought shelter on higher ground. Even there, the typhoon winds shook the house and rain poured through the roof. “We were scared for our safety and our lives,” they remember. “All we could do was pray!”

The next day, the Almasas returned to find their house destroyed by enormous trees, their belongings damaged. While thankful to be alive and safe, they had no idea how they would manage adequate shelter for their family. Your timely gifts helped the Almasas rebuild their home, and now they’re ready to move in.

“It was not just a house. It was our home,” Miguelio and Pina say. “For many years, it witnessed our life as a family, full of love, joy and nice memories. But in a snap of a finger, it was gone. We plan to transfer to the new house this week, and we will continue creating memories.”

To reach as many people as possible, Cebu Skin Clinic used your gifts in three ways: providing immediate assistance with food or cash; operating power generators in three remote villages, and making repairs to homes like the Almasas’. Your gifts also repaired roofs, ceilings and fences at the Skin Clinic. In total, 2,020 people received desperately needed help—thank you!

Standing with the Vulnerable

Kristy and her family received relief goods and construction support from Cebu Skin Clinic. A mother of two and former leprosy patient at the clinic, Kristy works as a fish vendor, barely earning enough to cover her family’s necessities. After her roof was destroyed by the super-typhoon, she didn’t know how they would recover. Your generous gifts gave Kristy the help she needed to provide for her family. 

“I am very happy,” Kristy says now. “When it rains, there’s no need for us to use an umbrella inside the house to keep us dry. Thank you for taking care of me in my lowest moments: first when I had leprosy, and second, when the super-typhoon hit us. I cannot thank you enough.”

Your partnership also makes it possible for us to ship needed medicines and medical supplies to partners like Cebu Skin Clinic. This month, with your support, we are sending over $2.5 million worth of supplies to the Philippines. Thank you for faithfully standing with the people of Cebu. Your gifts are changing lives, acting as a channel of Christ’s love in the Philippines and around the world.

Health assessments ALM

Kristy’s house lost its roof in the typhoon. With your support, she has a new one installed.

Health assessments ALM

Medical supplies ready to fly to Cebu! Thank you for your support helping us to pay shipping costs.