COAST CITIES — The humanitarian organization SurfAid, based in North San Diego County, has launched an appeal to assist the Filipino people in the wake of the Typhoon Haiyan.
You can donate to the SurfAid Philippines Appeal at surfaid.org/Philippines. In the U.S., you can also text SURFAID to 85944 to donate $10 to the SurfAid Philippines Appeal.
Billabong and the Quiksilver Foundation have pledged $5,000 each. The Philippines Government estimates that the super typhoon has affected more than 13 million people and 4.4 million people have been displaced from their homes. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reports that more than one million houses are damaged or destroyed, and 80 to 90 per cent of schools in Aklan, Capiz and Iloilo provinces were damaged or destroyed.
With the scale of the disaster and the logistical challenges, SurfAid CEO Andrew Judge said the organization has been establishing key local partnerships before appealing to donors.
“Local networks and on-the-ground capacity will ensure that we can be a channel for the surf community to make a valuable contribution to an effective response,” Judge said.ß After the typhoon struck, Indonesian staff of Johanniter, a German organization, approached SurfAid Country Director Anne Wuijts about a possible collaboration in the Philippines. Johanniter works on health promotion in Sumatra in parallel with SurfAid’s work in the Mentawai and Nias islands.
“Initially we are planning to support Filipino partners through Johanniter,” Wuijts said. “They have an excellent emergency response reputation, are on the ground, and are already providing medical assistance and supplies through established local networks.”
Jutta Meissner, Head of Desk Southeast Asia for Johanniter International Assistance, said: “We are already distributing food and shelter packages through our local partner on the islands Leyte and Panay. The need is huge. So we are very happy to get more support through SurfAid.”