Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda

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 (Photo Courtesy: Boston Globe)

On November 8th, 2013, the tropical cyclone Typhoon Haiayan (known as Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines) hit Southeast Asia, devastating the Philippines and northern Vietnam. In the Philippines alone (the country that hardest hit by the typhoon), an estimated 11 million citizens have been affected. 4 million have been displaced, 1779 are still missing, and 5,759 have been killed. Entire cities have been completely wiped out; hundreds of thousands of houses have been destroyed; and millions of Pilipinos are without food, water, or shelter. Furthermore, the number of fatalities will only increase as areas that have been devastated are finally reached.

Aid organizations have first tackled the immediate needs of the survivors, providing food, water, and medicine. As the need for immediate relief has been abated, the Philippine government, as well as others aiding the relief effort, is shifting its focus to the rebuilding of the areas devastated by the typhoon. The rebuilding of the Philippines will take years, if not decades to be completed.

For a direct way to help the relief efforts already underway in the Philippines, donate to the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns and Rebuild Cebu.

Our hearts go out to those affected by the typhoon: a tragedy of this scope is not contained to those in Southeast Asia, but also encompasses the thoughts of those across the globe. Let us all carry in our minds thoughts of love and support to the victims and their families, and do as much as we can to alleviate their suffering.

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