Phillipines Recovery Donation Opportunity with CIEL

It’s a long story, but I have a soft spot in my heart for CIEL (and have supported them for a number of years). It’s one of those personal trumps philosophical kinds of things.I received this email today and donated; thought I would share this opportunity.

From CIEL: In the catastrophic wake of Typhoon Haiyan, all of us are searching for ways to show our solidarity and offer our aid to the people of the Philippines.

This morning, we received the message below from Filipino lawyer and renowned environmental activist Antonio Oposa. Tony received CIEL’s International Environmental Law Award in 2008 for his precedent-setting work to protect the environmental rights of future generations. For all of us at CIEL, he remains a close partner, a good friend and–as his message below makes clear–a continuing source of inspiration and hope.

Dear Carroll and CIEL friends:

Thank you very much for your concern for me and my family. We are all safe.

I just returned from Bantayan Island yesterday. The devastation is beyond belief. Miraculously, casualties in the Island have been very low. We are helping arrange for the sending of immediate-relief goods and of a medical team. In the School of the SEA (Sea and Earth Advocates), my trusted co-worker (Dodoy Marabi) and his immediate and extended family are all safe. However, their entire village in the island across was wiped out.

Out of the seven structures of the School of the SEA, only two remain standing: the White House (and conference hall) which suffered damage, and the Climate Change House (CCH). The latter suffered very minor damage as it was designed to be climate resilient and to be sufficient in food and water even during an emergency. The Climate Change House is the product of the 2008 Typhoon Frank that totally destroyed the original structure of the School. Yes, we learned the lessons of climate resilience.

The rest of the structures of the School of the SEA are all gone… with the wind. (I try to laugh because it is too painful to cry).

We will rebuild, one way or another, sooner or later.

What is more painful is to see my neighbors and surrounding communities, people who have much less, and yet lost even the little that they had. In my own little way, I immediately started a jobs-generation activity just for people to get out of their daze and back on their feet — clearing the debris, chopping wood, making fish condos and urban edible gardens, etc. Giving people livelihood activities (of only about 200 pesos or 5 dollars a day) will give them a source of income to start rebuilding their lives and restore their sense of self-worth. Hopefully soon, we will start the repair and reconstruction of model climate-resilient structures of the School of the SEA. That should create more jobs.

Many have inquired how they can help. Thank you very much for the thought. More than the resources you share is the moral support you give for our shared dream.

For those who wish to help rebuild the School and with the job-generation activities, CIEL will channel 100% of donations made here to immediate relief.

From our hearts, thank you very much for the kind thoughts, prayers, and for your sincere concern for my family and for our people. It gives us great strength in this time of great crisis.

You have my word: We will rise again … stronger and better than ever.

Tony

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