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Fundraiser at CSUSB to benefit Philippine victims of Typhoon Haiyan

According to the United Nations, “Typhoon Haiyan destroyed or damaged an estimated 1 million homes across the Eastern and Western Visayas Regions of the central Philippines.
According to the United Nations, “Typhoon Haiyan destroyed or damaged an estimated 1 million homes across the Eastern and Western Visayas Regions of the central Philippines.

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. -- It’s been almost four months since Typhoon Haiyan’s devastating winds and floods whipped through the central Philippines, killing more than 6,200 people and wiping some places entirely off the map.

Now, in early 2014, while some parts of the island nation are recovering, much more work remains in other areas, especially those still isolated because of the storm damage to roads and other infrastructure.

On Friday, March 7, Cal State San Bernardino will be the site of a fundraiser to benefit the continuing recovery work in some of the harder hit areas, especially those that are not easily reached and out of the media spotlight, unlike Tacloban City, where much of the news coverage was centered.

“A Fundraiser for the Philippine Typhoon Haiyan Victims” – a program of Philippine folk dances, a presentation on the continuing relief work and what is still needed, and a surprise number or two – will take place from 4:30-6:30 p.m. at CSUSB’s Santos Manuel Student Union Theater. And while there is no admission (parking at the university is $5), those attending can donate any amount to the relief effort.

CSUSB groups Lubos PASO (the Filipino student group); the Global Citizens Organization; Asian Faculty, Staff and Student Association; Phi Beta Delta; the department of anthropology; the department of theater arts; and the School of Computer Science and Engineering are organizing the fundraiser.

Typhoon Haiyan struck the central Philippine region known as the Visayas on Nov. 8, 2013. Classified by meteorologists as a category 5 typhoon, it brought with it sustained winds of 145 mph, with gusts up to 195 mph (the strongest such storm on record), heavy rains and a storm surge of seawater almost 24 feet high. The storm’s damage to agriculture and infrastructure was estimated at more than $878 million, affecting more than 10 million people.

According to the United Nations, “Typhoon Haiyan destroyed or damaged an estimated 1 million homes across the Eastern and Western Visayas Regions of the central Philippines. Three months on from the devastating storm, the most pressing needs in the affected areas are for durable shelter and the restoration of livelihoods.”

The barangay of Guiuan (in the Philippines, a barangay is the smallest governmental administrative division, roughly equivalent to a district or ward), in the province of Eastern Samar, was one of the places first hit by Haiyan’s storm surge and high winds. In December, a group of nuns from Manila, the Philippine capital, made an overland trip from the city of Legazpi to Guiuan, a distance of roughly 311 miles. Before the typhoon, the drive would have taken about 8 ½ hours. With the severe damage to roads and other infrastructure, it took the Good Shepherd Sisters 17 hours to reach Guiuan.

Undaunted, the Good Shepherd Sisters made a second long trip on Jan. 29, and will continue to travel there to help Guiuan’s residents back on their feet, according to news the fundraiser’s organizers received from one of the nuns, Sister Maria Milagros Santos.

Proceeds from the fundraiser will go toward the continuing relief efforts of the Good Shepherd Sisters.

For those who can not attend “A Fundraiser for the Philippine Typhoon Haiyan Victims,” but still want to contribute, donations may be sent to Lubos PAS0, c/o Professor Kathleen Nadeau, Department of Anthropology, California State University, San Bernardino, 5500 University Parkway, San Bernardino, CA 92407.   Checks should be made out to Lubos PASO.

For more information on the event, contact Arturo Concepcion at (909) 537-5330 or email at concep@csusb.edu.

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