Relief efforts underway for victims of Supertyphoon Yolanda - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Relief efforts underway for victims of Supertyphoon Yolanda

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by Jolene Toves

Guam - It has been called the strongest typhoon of the year with gusts of wind between 195-200 miles per hour, now in the aftermath relief efforts are underway.

In the aftermath of Supertyphoon Yolanda cries of help can be heard not only from the victims left to pick up the pieces but from their families here on island. One of those concerned residents is Rosario Aguerri, who said, "I am so worried I am sure they are okay as I have faith in God and I know they are okay in my heart it's just knowing that they are so hungry."

She calls her home forgotten Sabang a little village near the coastal waters of the Philippines tonight she hopes that her call for aid will be heard by the community and donations will make it to her fellow Filipinos. "This donation is for people that is affected by this tragedy we are already gathering money from brothers to brothers to sister but how are we going to send it," she said.

While relief efforts around the world are being conducted there is an outpour of support on island by various organizations throughout the community to gather necessities such food water and medicine. Filipino Community of Guam president Roy Adonay told KUAM News, "We would like to focus more on the medical aspect of things so we are going to be concentrating and providing medical supplies medicine medical equipment to the people of the Philippines."

Monetary donations are being accepted by the Philippine consulate. Consul Edgar Auxilian said, "The most convenient way of extending assistance to our typhoon affected cababayans back in the Philippines is through monetary assistance and we have posted in our website as well as in our Facebook account as well as circulated in the various newspapers here on the island the account numbers of the different government agencies."

Those who would like to make donations can visit one of the sites and channel the money directly to the organizations. Monetary donations are also being accepted by the Guam American Red Cross chapter.

Meanwhile the Philippine Consulate is also making attempts to contact relatives of families here on island but are faced with downed communication lines. "We here at the Philippine consulate once we received information from some relatives and we have received a number already we convey this information also to our Department of Foreign Affairs to assist us in locating the families or relatives who ever might want to locate them," said Auxilian.

If you have family in the Philippines who may have been affected by Supertyphoon Yolanda contact the Philippine Consulate at 646-4620.

Governor's Office
Additionally, the Governor's Office will be hosting a boot drive this Friday. "There's going to be a boot drive at the intersection of the Micronesian Mall and ITC Intersection actually spearheaded by the Governor's Office from 4-6 they actually ask all the Government of Guam employees all the agencies to come out and participate," said Adonay.

A second boot drive will be held next Friday on the 22nd.

United Airlines
Also chipping in their support the United Airlines partnering with American Red Cross will donate up to $50,000 to match donations to partner organization from United customers and employees.

Mayors
The Agana Heights Mayors Office meanwhile is accepting donations such as canned goods, clothes as well as monetary contributions for the victims of the super storm. Agana Heights resident Nympha Garces, who is originally from Tacloban, is actually leaving for the Philippines this Saturday and will transport the donations directly there.

Donations can be dropped off up until Friday from 8-5pm at the mayors office.

Guam Medical Association
The Guam Medical Association is also lending a hand. Instead of discussing the issue of medicinal marijuana during their meeting this Thursday, instead they will be focusing on the recent disaster in the Philippines and how they can provide assistance.

This mission, the organization says, is of the highest priority. The organization has kicked of a GMA Cares Philippines Typhoon Relief Fund and have raised over $12,000 in the first six hours.  At the end of the week the GMA will present a collective amount to the American Red Cross.

The GMA is also assembling a medical team for a medical mission to the Philippines to provide medical assistance.

Military
U.S. Pacific Command has been directed to support the U.S. Government humanitarian relief operations in the Philippines.  Marines stationed in Futenma were also preparing for the disaster relief mission as they will provide an initial assessment on the support that is required.  According to the Department of Defense, the initial focus of the efforts include surface and airborne maritime search and rescue. The Philippines is one of five U.S. allies in the Asia-Pacific Region.

KUAM telethon
The Stations of KUAM meanwhile are also doing our part. We are currently planning a special pledge drive for Monday, November 18 starting at 6:30 pm. You will be able to make a monetary donation by calling directly into our Harmon studios. All contributions will be provided to the Filipino Community of Guam. 

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