To All Our VFV Family Across the Globe,
We are relieved to announce that all of the children in VFV’s Direct Sponsorship Program have been accounted for, and now we are already in the process of evaluating the needs of all the families. As part of our initial assessment, we will be reviewing the children’s housing, medical, and daily needs, and communicating our findings directly to sponsors as well as considering them on a larger scale when implementing new initiatives in our communities. We are doing our best to effectively provide relief goods to all our sponsored children and their families at this time, especially those in the greatest need.
In the areas of Cangumbang, Santa Fe, and Tanauan, which includes the villages of Mohon and San Roque, we have seen the most devastation from the storm. These family’s homes were completely destroyed by the high winds and in some cases more than two-story high storm surges and flooding. Sadly, one of the sponsored children in these areas was not able to survive the storm, as the level of destruction was so great. His sponsor has been informed and VFV as a whole are mourning the loss of one of our own.
Despite the loss of life in these areas, we are thankful to see that most of these areas are receiving a minimal amount of relief goods and most also have access to medical care if needed. The families in these areas are working together to build shelters and maintain their daily needs. We are also happy to report that our newly built Evacuation Center in Cangumbang proved to save the entire village from a storm no one could have predicted. Our focus in these areas in the coming weeks will be to provide relief goods, and develop long term plans for the construction of homes and the development of the communities as a whole.
Our community center in Barangay Sto. Nino, which serves children enrolled in our Dumpsite Program, was one of the least damaged areas from the storm. Although some of the homes were damaged, all the children have plentiful access to relief goods and they are all in good health.
Though our main office located within our community center in Bliss, a neighborhood of Tacloban City, was greatly damaged, we are thankful to have accounted for all of our sponsored children in the area, along with all our homestay families. At least half of the community’s homes were completely destroyed, but the families whose homes withstood the 7 foot flooding are welcoming in neighbors and working together to survive these difficult times. The community has a stable flow of relief goods and are within close proximity to our current operations center and an active medical center.
We are still in the process of verifying the status of the dozen or so families who are connected to programs associated with our international partners. If you have not received an update from Elsa Thomasma, our Communications Coordinator, please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org (please insert the name of your sponsored child in the subject line) and she will update you as soon as possible.
Our entire VFV Staff and Board of Trustees have been working hard to locate our sponsored children over the past 3 weeks, despite being victims of the Typhoon’s devastation, traveling through challenging debris ridden areas, attempting to find ways to rebuild their own lives, and dealing with the current lack of infrastructure throughout the entire island of Leyte.
Volunteer for the Visayans is devoted to continuing our mission regardless of the challenges which lie ahead of us. We were founded on the principles of sustainable development through community project implementation, and we will continue to move forward with this mission when we are needed most. VFV is committed to rebuilding the lives of those we serve and restoring our communities so that our children can continue to look forward to a bright future ahead.
Thank you for your patience, understanding, and support over the past few weeks. We can never thank our sponsors and supporters enough for everything they do for us.
The VFV Team