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Salesian Missions Responds to Typhoon Devastation in Philippines, Issues Urgent Call for Donations

NEW ROCHELLE, NY & CEBU CITY, PHILIPPINES (Nov. 12, 2013) Salesian Missions has launched an emergency fund to support the relief efforts of Salesians in the Philippines in the aftermath of Typhoon Haiyan. The effort is part of an international response by the Don Bosco Network.

Donations are urgently needed to get food, water and other life-saving supplies to the victims. Since the Salesians were already working in the affected communities, they were able to begin responding immediately.

To make a donation, people are urged to go to SalesianMissions.org/cyclone and select “Philippines Typhoon Emergency” in the donation options. The funds raised by Salesian Missions will be used to help deliver life-saving aid to vulnerable children and families affected by the devastating typhoon.

“Salesians were on the ground and able to respond immediately,” said Fr. Mark Hyde, executive director of Salesian Missions, referring to the fact that Salesians have been working to help vulnerable children and families in the Philippines since 1950. “But they need additional help and we are responding to that call.”

Salesian missionaries, students and volunteers have been working to prepare an initial 30,000 relief packages (containing food and survival essentials) to help victims. Additional funds are necessary in order to meet the continued need of victims.

In addition to preparing the distribution of life-saving aid, Salesian buildings that withstood the storm have been opened to the communities to offer shelter. Families are sleeping in gymnasiums and classrooms that have been converted into safe havens for the homeless.

Salesian missionaries in the Philippines have reported that in works in Cebu and Manila are functioning and have lines of communication and are able to coordinate a response. They are still waiting to hear from Salesian-supported communities that were in the direct path of the hurricane—and remain without any lines of communication.

The Salesians had already been working to help victims of the Oct. 15 earthquake, and report that the situation is dire.

We are trying to link up with others to help in the relief operations,” said Fr. George P. Militante from Cebu. “We are hearing that the basic needs for food, water, tarps and temporary shelters are the priorities.”

They have designated 11 drop-off centers to receive donations in Cebu, Davao Oriental and Negros Occidental. The Salesians in the Philippines have also issued a call for volunteers to help assemble relief packages. Full details are available at www.donboscomissionsfund.org.

To make a donation, people are urged to go to SalesianMissions.org/cyclone and select “Philippines Typhoon Emergency” in the donation options.

ABOUT SALESIAN MISSIONS:

Salesian Missions is headquartered in New Rochelle, NY, and is part of the Don Bosco Network—a worldwide federation of Salesian NGOs. The mission of the U.S.-based nonprofit Catholic organization is to raise funds for international programs that serve youth and families in poor communities around the globe. The Salesian missionaries are made up of priests, brothers and sisters, as well as laypeople—all dedicated to caring for poor children throughout the world in more than 130 countries and helping young people become self-sufficient by learning a trade that will help them gain employment. Every day, millions of youth have received services provided by the Salesians. These services and programs are provided to children regardless of race or religion.

SPECIAL CONTENT – TYPHOON HAIYAN
NOVEMBER 2013

In the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, information from our Missionaries in the Philippines is rapidly pouring in. We want to share this information quickly with our extended community in order to keep you informed of new developments, immediate and ongoing needs, and progress being made. Please check back daily to see the latest updates from our Missionaries and partners.

2013-11-14 10:46AM
Our Office for International Programs is currently preparing a relief container for shipment to the Philippines early next week. This shipment will include rice meals (provided by partner organization Stop Hunger Now) and medical supplies. Don Bosco Mondo in Germany, part of the Don Bosco Network, is providing some funds to purchase medicine. Plans to provide additional medicine, food, tents and other supplies are developing.

2013-11-14 3:34AM
Our Missionaries on Bantayan Island—one of the worst-affected areas—are delivering life-saving food to victims of Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda. With more than 2.5 million people in desperate need of food assistance (U.N. figure), this work is critical and ongoing.

2013-11-12 9:37PM
Fr. Eli Cruz, SDB, of the Philippines-North Province (FIN), reports no damage to Salesian houses in the region. The Philippines-South Province (FIS), centered in Cebu City, also sustained little damage—but the surrounding areas have been devastated. Donations sent via Salesian Missions in the U.S. will be used to purchase relief supplies—food, water, warm clothing and tarps—for direct distribution to victims.

2013-11-11 3:15PM
According to Fr. George P. Militante, SDB, Salesians in the Southern Philippine Province have quickly organized to provide immediate relief efforts. “We are all saddened by the untold suffering and loss of lives . . . the greatest need at the moment is food supplies for survival,” he reports. He and other Salesian community members have already prepared 30,000 food packages for victims; long-term, they will be closely involved with the country’s rebuilding and rehabilitation.

2013-11-11 1:51PM
Provincial communities in Manila and Cebu City are functioning with normal communications—making them ideal locations to coordinate relief activities. However, Salesians have been unable to contact communities in Barangan, East Samar and Dumnaga, Iloilo. Both were in the direct path of the typhoon, and the Province is quite concerned.

2013-11-10 2:24PM
Salesians in the Southern Philippine Province are working to organize a coordinated relief effort. “From the sparse news that we receive here and there, the basic needs for food, water, tarpaulins for temporary shelter are priorities,” says Fr. George P. Militante, SDB. “Any help would be most welcome.”

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