18 December 2011

'Sendong' Flood Kills Hundreds in Mindanao

Mindanao Flood Victim
As we try to celebrate the Holiday Season, I would like to appeal to everyone to try to do what they can in helping the victims of the worst flooding to hit Mindanao in recent memory. According to the Philippine Red Cross on 17 December 2011, the death toll at this time has already reached 440.

The government has already mobilized about 20,000 soldiers in a huge rescue and relief operation across the stricken north coast of the island of Mindanao, but we all know that this not enough. Residents of surviving families in needs our help. Many are still searching for their lost relatives. It was estimated that about 215 are still missing in Cagayan de Oro city and 144 residents in nearby Iligan city.

The photo you above hopes to explain the gravity of the situation. It was posted by blogger and Twitter user "Mindanaoan." It was a TwitPic photo of an unidentified man in Consolacion, Cagayan de Oro, weeping as he clutched the muddied body of his drowned daughter to his chest.

Among those that needs critical and immediate care at this time are the children. Aid worker Crislyn Felisilda informed the media that there is a need to care of the children who had became separated from their families or lost their parents. "Many children are looking for their loved ones... (and children were) crying and staring into space."

Rosal Agacac, a 40-year-old mother, was begging authorities to help find her two children after their shanty was swept to the sea. "Please President Noynoy, help me," she cried, holding a candle at a spot where their house stood before the floods, referring to President Benigno Aquino.

Let's not wait for the situation to get worse. We all know, based on our experience, that the suffering is just beginning. Diseases could soon set in if not enough effort is made to secure potable water and healthy food. Let us celebrate Christmas by helping those who badly need our help.