Through the eyes of a survivor of Tyfoon Haiyan
I am Charlie Mercado Sambitan, I work as a Technical Assistant of the Foundation Center Inc. I am a YOLANDA TYPHOON SURVIVOR.
The day before the storm Haiyan (YOLANDA) November 7, 2013, I went to the office to get my computer and other valuables. That time my friend who lives in Canada called me via phone to warn that there is a strong typhoon heading towards the Philippines and begging me to evacuate the city as soon as possible. At that moment I did not listen because it seemed like the weather was fine and there was nothing to worry about.
Next morning the strongest typhoon ever hit Tacloban City, It was only a winked of an eye that our house was wrecked by very strong winds. Boats go up to higher ground. It felt like it was the end of days, struggling for almost 3 hours with strong winds. As I checked my family, all of us were wet, shocked and chilling. The only question I had in mind was “HOW WILL WE SURVIVE THIS?” I went to the city to find food for my family. I walk along with the dead bodies on the streets, debris all around and everything was lost, a nightmare that I could no longer forget in my whole life. Many lives have taken and many people were suffering, no food, no water, no help, nothing at all.
But God is good, when the people around the world have fled towards us for help, sharing their love and embrace. This catastrophe has not yet ended and I am expecting that this will happen again, and again. This is the effect of climate change. A phenomenon cannot be avoided but we can mitigate this by loving our mother earth