Samaritan’s Purse is providing urgently needed relief to storm victims.
Super Typhoon Rai pummeled the island nation of the Philippines on Dec. 16-17 with winds exceeding 250 kph —causing major destruction and leaving almost 400 people dead and hundreds of thousands displaced.
The typhoon—known locally as Odette—was comparable to what in North America would be referred to as a Category 5 hurricane. Its devastating path disrupted the lives of millions of people in Southern Leyte, Surigao Del Norte, Dinagat Islands, Bohol, and Cebu. Landslides and flash floods that were responsible for much of the tragic loss of life also destroyed more than 50,000 homes. In addition, hundreds of towns lost power and locals anticipate it may take up to three months to restore service.
The Samaritan’s Purse country office in the Philippines began preparing a response even before the storm hit and quickly deployed 20 staff members who are working with church partners to meet the urgent needs of those suffering. We are providing emergency food and water (including a large-scale water treatment system). Our plan is to reach thousands of families through these efforts.
If you are interested in joining our DART roster to be a part of these types of disaster responses, click here to apply.
While nearly 20 storms or typhoons generally hit the Philippines each year, many local reports consider the damage from Rai to be similar to that of Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), which claimed over 6,000 lives in Nov. 2013. Samaritan’s Purse has been working continuously in the Philippines since our initial 2013 disaster relief response. That work includes preparing partner churches to respond after disasters.
Please pray for those affected by the storm and for Samaritan’s Purse staff members and partners as they serve them in Jesus’ Name.