Monthly Archives: June 2014

Destroyed but not defeated: Ormoc community lives on

ORMOC, Philippines – For Merlita Matudina, Super Typhoon Yolanda, internationally known as Haiyan, was nothing.

Haiyan destroyed their possessions, left her family close to starving for weeks and removed the roof of their house in Ormoc, Leyte. More than half a year later, she recalled it simply as a day of very strong winds, heavy rain, and a temporary separation from her family.

For the 55-year-old single mother of 3, Haiyan is no match for the flash flood Ormoc experienced in 1991, when she met a mother’s worst fear – losing a child.

There’s no doubt in Merlita’s mind that to her, Yolanda was kind. After the strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines in 2013 came and went, the only casualties in the Gawad Kalinga (GK) village where she lived were houses and things.

After losing a husband to cancer, a firstborn to disaster, and raising 3 children with the meager earnings of a food vendor, Yolanda was just another chapter in an eventful life.

Hardships taught her to fear – but they also taught her to thrive.

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Small Fishermen of Ormoc Band Together

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Common dreams among people with common livelihoods often make up the most powerful organizations. For this reason, the Ormoc Small Fishermen’s Association (OSFA), composed of six sub-organizations have banded together, holding their first Induction of Officers in June 11, 2014. The sub-organizations, with members from Barangays Linao and Naungan in Ormoc City, had their officers sworn in by City Councilor Hon. Vince Rama and Barangay Captain Rafael Taneo.

The aim of the OSFA is to bind together the small fishermen, so that the benefits of one become the benefits of all. One of the hardest hit livelihoods in Ormoc, fishing is one of the most important small industries that was dealt a heavy blow by Supertyphoon Yolanda (Haiyan).

Richard Gomez to run for mayor in Ormoc

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