It’s day 17 of our relief work in the Visasyas provinces of the Philippines. Every day, I’ve heard inspiring stories of survival and painful stories of loss.
It’s difficult to convey the scale of this disaster or how serious a situation the Filipino people and their animals are facing so let me instead, tell you about some of the people and animals we are helping.
Rilie Francis is 11 years old. He and his one year old dog Liney came form treatment at our mobile clinic in Mamarang Sapa. He described the terror he felt the night of the typhoon as he feared his home would be smashed and his family and their beloved dog would not make it. Fortunately, they did. But, in the remoter areas of Aklan where aid has been slow to arrive or not arrive at all, the evidence of the toll it has taken is obvious. Both he and his dog were far too thin and looked weary. We helped him by boosting Liney’s health with vitamin injections and anti-worm drugs as well as provided some food for his family.
Two young boys from the same village Jomar Nalagan 10, and MarJo Nalagan Jr. 8, brought their puppies for treatment and waited with worried expressions while we helped “Lance” a one month old grey puppy and “Brownie” and “Blackie” a pair of two month old puppies. When our Filipino volunteer vets explained to them that now their dogs would be ok, healthier and able to cope during the slow recovery time, their eyes lit up and Marjo hugged his two young pups to his chest while saying “Salamat” (thank you) over and over again.
Ethel Nacuray 56, and her son Andrew 27 arrived next, with their five cows and one water buffalo in tow. Ethel told me she hasn’t slept in weeks, worried about how to take care of her family and their animals. Once we treated them, Ethel took my hands in hers and with tears in her eyes said “please tell the world what is happening here. Thank you WSPA*.”