Paging media, Cagayanos in dire need of help
The media play a critical role after a disaster. They provide timely and needed information regarding relief and rehabilitation services that are available to the survivors.
Cagayan, my province, was badly hit by the dreaded Supertyphoon “Lawin” as it was directly in the path of the storm. It left hundreds of my provincemates homeless—and without food, water and electricity and communication services, at that. Lawin left in its wake a flattened province, worse, a cataclysmic scenario.
Local authorities deserve praise though. They prepared and warned our people of the coming supertyphoon. But the typhoon’s sheer force simply overwhelmed their well-meaning predisaster plans and pretyphoon preparations.
Inevitably, comparisons are being made between Supertyphoon “Yolanda,” which struck in 2013 and Lawin. The scale of destruction that Yolanda caused so shocked the national government that it declared the suffering of the survivors and the devastation as a national calamity.
The media were also quick to initiate “help drives” for the survivors. Some of them held telethons to raise funds and collect food and clothes. Some of their talents and artists conducted their own fund-raising campaigns. Meanwhile, aid in various forms and significant quantities poured in from all over the world.
The national government itself appointed a rehabilitation czar, who was supposed to spearhead the recovery and reconstruction efforts in the affected areas.
Recently, the Cagayanos fell victim to the strongest howler ever to make landfall in their province. The media can help us Cagayanos by posting and sharing heartbreaking images of our typhoon-ravaged province, using their resources and facilities.
Let the world see an epic tragedy that has befallen our communities. Listen to our sad stories and look for ways to help. Let the national government feel our disappointment and frustration in the aftermath of this devastating typhoon that almost stripped us of our dignity as a people.
Truth be told, we do not like to think that we have an uncaring national government.
I call on the media to do something—spread the word that we Cagayanos need help because of a monster typhoon that has so ravaged our province.
Is anyone listening? Does anybody care?
God bless our province, Cagayan!
REGINALD B. TAMAYO, Marikina City
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