IN MANY ways, the northern tip of the island of Cebu does not
look like a place ravaged by a powerful typhoon just three months
ago. Trees are down, with their roots showing, and the occasional
corrugated-iron roof is damaged. But it is only when the Filipinos
tell their stories, that the impact of the storm becomes clear.
Era Aroy, a mother of six, said that she fled to the nearest
church as the typhoon hit her village of Manlagtang. "It sounded
like a helicopter or an aeroplane was passing," she said. "The wind
was howling - it was the strongest storm we have ever known."
Typhoon Haiyan tore her fragile home to pieces. "We couldn't
bury the foundations into the soil because we don't own the
Mrs Aroy had to cobble together shelter from the shattered
fragments of her house in less than a day. Her old bamboo bed is
now her floor, and her two youngest children live in a makeshift
Another victim of Haiyan was Virginia Samsung. Her daughter, who
lives in the nearby town, warned her that the typhoon was coming;
so she left her village of Lanao. When she returned, her house was
gone. "Almost all the dwellings in the area were destroyed," she
Her daughters were not able to send her money in the first two
months after the storm, but a cash-transfer programme by the aid
agency World Vision stepped into the breach. Mrs Samson received
two payments of about £35 each in December and January from the
charity as emergency relief. She has used the money to buy food and
To donate to the World Vision typhoon appeal, visit worldvision.org.uk.