Remembering Bob Reichenbach, The Friend of a Lifetime (1948-2013)

Yesterday the news came from Nicole Reichenbach that her father and my great and true friend Bob Reichenbach died on December 10th from complications from the stomach cancer he’d been fighting with incredible grace and courage for the last year.  I knew this was coming — but it has come too soon, and too unfairly.

Do the math: P238.6M Typhoon Fund Release will help only 47,000 of the 1,192,093 displaced families

There are times when you really have to pause, think, and DO THE MATH.  This is one such time. The Philippine government on December 11 announced the release of P238.6M ($5.6M) for housing aid for Typhoon Yolanda victims under the  Housing Materials Assistance (HOMA) program, saying that this program will provide  P5,000 in housing materials  “for

P239-M in housing aid for Yolanda Victims released

Via Philippine Information Agency. MANILA, Dec. 11 — Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Florencio “Butch” Abad has released P238.6 million to the National Housing Authority (NHA) to support the Housing Materials Assistance (HOMA) to victims of Typhoon Yolanda under the agency’s Emergency Housing Assistance for Calamity Victims Program (EHACVP). The release—sourced from Budgetary

NDRRMC: Typhoon Yolanda destroyed 593,787 houses and damaged 598,306 others

In its situation update for December 10, 2013, the Phiilppine government’s National Disaster and Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported that Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) completely destroyed 593,787 houses and damaged another 598,306. The number of affected barangays is now reported as 12,122. Full statistics and information from NDRRMC: Effects *Casualties 5,936 dead 27,022 injured

Video: Romualdez Makes Tearful Accusations Against Roxas, PNoy — and Roxas says he’s “lying”.

The Philppines has been buzzing all day in reaction to testimony given Monday in the Philippine Senate by Tacloban City Mayer Alfredo Romualdez that included tearful accusations that DILG Minister Mars Roxas and President Benigno Aquino had withheld vital support for Tacloban during the worst of the disaster on political grounds — “You’re a Romualdez,

Eyewitness Report: Guiuan a Month After Typhoon Haiyan

I received an email report today from an international visitor who was in Guiuan during the past week doing advance work for a possible relief project.  As most will recall, Guiuan is the town of 40,000 in Eastern Samar where Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) first made landfall. The town is on a peninsula that separates the

Senior UN Official Defends Philippine Government but Worries Aid Not Reaching Philippine Victims, Will Investigate

Valerie Amos, the UN Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, indicated on Monday that her office has  “a little bit of worry that in a couple of the smaller islands there may be needs there that we haven’t managed to meet yet.  I’m still hearing worrying reports in the media–indeed I

#ReliefPH Aid Monitoring: $16,629,654 in Relief Disbursed to Date by Philippine Government

#ReliefPH, which is associated with #MovePH and Rappler.com, is maintaining a very helpful Google Document which you can view here .  The spreadsheet (actually 9 spreadsheets, one each for Leyte, Eastern Samar, Western Samar, Biliran, Cebu, Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Iloilo, and Palawan) tracks the  status of relief efforts on a Province by Province, Municipality by Municipality basis.

Video: A Touching Thank You From Filipinos to the World

This very touching and heartfelt video was shown Friday night, December 6, during a thank-you dinner to honor the foreign volunteers who are helping in the Yolanda / Haiyan relief at the Cebu Provincial Capitol Social Hall. It contains some of the most evocative photos I’ve seen — and some wonderful bits and pieces that

Typhoon Yolanda Aftermath: Normalization Task Force Lists Enterprises Now Operating in Tacloban

The Tacloban City Normalization Task Force has listed the following establishments which are now open for business: A. Grocery Stores/Commodities 1. 1.Kokoy’s Grocerette- Sto. Niño ( 8am-4pm) 2. A1 Milling-Marasbaras 3. New Karry Convenience Store-A. Veteranos cor Sto. Nino -selling rice and water only; (7am-8pm) 4. Hayward Convenience Store-Paterno St. 5. Quicksaver Mart-Paterno St 6.

Chinese NGO Team Finds 120 Bodies under San Juanico Bridge Today; Gov’t Announces 1M Homes Destroyed

It sounds beyond bizarre. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, ABS-CBN News, and other are reporting that today, almost a month after Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) hit, relief workers discovered 120 bodies underneath the San Juanico Bridge that connects Leyte and Samar. But they won’t add to the death toll, presumably, because they are not identified and bodies

Lawaan, Eastern Samar: Latest Assessment of Needs by the Diocese of Borongan

from Lawaan.com via Fr. Neil Gavan Tenefrancia LAWAAN (Latest Assessment as of Nov. 27) by Diocese of Borongan-Communications Group -Immediate Needs: Shelter, Food, Mats -International organzations such as USAID and WFP (World Food Programme) has been partnering with the local parish for relief distribution as the municipal hall could not accommodate the volume of relief