Typhoon Haiyan: One Year Later


Happy belated Thanksgiving from the CRC! This year we are thankful for many things, one of which being God's healing and restoration in the Philippines this past year following Typhoon Haiyan. 

The following is just one story of hope and thanksgiving from the Philippines. 

Merna and Recaredo Ginco had the privilege of being the first family to receive a new home from World Renew following Typhoon Haiyan.

Before the storm hit, life was already difficult for Merna, Recaredo and their two sons. To make ends meet Recaredo and Merna hired themselves out as occasional labourers on other people’s farms. The pay was small. 

Recaredo’s health was poor and he contracted pneumonia. The two boys were also often sick because of the dust and dampness in their bamboo home. This meant that valuable family resources were spent on medicine. The family had no savings to fall back on. 

Then,Typhoon Haiyan hit. More than 200 families in their community of Palaguian lost all or part of their homes. The Ginco’s house completely collapsed. While some families were able to salvage part of their home or use savings to purchase supplies for repairs, Merna and Recaredo had nothing. They simply continued to live in their collapsed home. 

“We had just one room which four of us lived in,” said Merna. “As the house was broken, you couldn’t live in it normally. You could not even stand up or walk around. We spent most of our time outside and just crawled inside to sleep.” 

It was also dangerous. 

"I was worried about my smallest son because he was so small his feet could slip through the holes in the broken wooden floor slats,” said Merna.  “When it rained, we were afraid because we thought the house would be completely knocked down.” 

The Gincos received a typhoon-and-earthquake-resistant house from World Renew in June 2014. It was the first prototype house that World Renew built and was constructed to withstand 200 kph winds. While these are more expensive to build than other shelters, they provide families with safety and security even during storms. 

Merna and Recaredo helped out with the construction. Merna fetched water and Recaredo cut bamboo. They also learned from the construction team. 

“If I have money in the future to build an extension to the kitchen, I will build it as strong as this house, because I have learned how to build a stronger structure,” said Recaredo.

The couple says that their new house is definitely an answer to prayer and a true blessing from God.  

“As long as we are living, we will not forget what World Renew has done for us. Thank you World Renew for giving us a house that is strong,” said Merna.

Thank you for your continued prayer and support in the response to Typhoon Haiyan! To learn more about the response or to make a donation, please click here

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