Supreme Master Ching Hai International Association relief news from the Philippines.
On September 24, floods swept through the southern Philippine province of Maguindanao, claiming at least one life and displacing over 150,000 people.
Police and soldiers worked to clear waterways and reduce flood levels, which reached chest-deep in areas surrounding Liguawasan Marsh and Buluan lake.
Ronald Batinding – Municipal Planning & Development Coordinator of Datu Montawal (M): The recent flood reached up to waist level. Even though the people didn’t evacuate, their crops were destroyed.
VOICE: Requesting that our Association members please go to comfort the most desperate, Supreme Master Ching Hai offered US$15,000 in emergency aid, with all her love and prayers.
This amount could acquire US$203,000 in urgent items if purchased in the United States, based on the Philippines’ cost of living. Covering their own travel and related expenses of US$1,580, our Association’s relief team from Formosa (Taiwan) joined our Philippine Association members in Manila.
Together, they flew to Maguindanao province, where the Department of Social Welfare office directed them to the most remote municipality of Datu Montawal. There, they were met by local officials who volunteered even throughout the weekend to assist the relief team.
By October 1, they had obtained and packed vegan food supplies that they distributed the next day, including rice, cooking oil, brown sugar, salt, soy sauce, vinegar, bath soap, and laundry detergent.
Relief recipient (F): Master Ching Hai, thanks to what you have given us.
VOICE: In addition, remaining funds of approximately US$1,170 were donated to the local Batungkayo Elementary School, which was in need of repair.
Abdullah B. Salik, Jr. – Principal, Batungkayo Elementary School (M): I thank you for your help, Supreme Master Ching Hai. This assistance that you provided, Madam, of 50,000 pesos, we are going to spend for chairs, blackboards, and partitions for our school.
Ronald Batinding (M): The government of Datu Montawal is truly thankful to Supreme Master Ching Hai for the help she extended to our countrypersons affected by the flood.
VOICE: With gratefulness for the Philippine officials' efforts, we join in thanking Supreme Master Ching Hai for her caring support of the flood victims and our Association’s relief team for their diligent service. May such disastrous weather events as these be eased through our more conscientious actions toward the ecosphere.