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Slow recovery for the parish in the eye of the storm

By Myrna Bermudo

One month after the last typhoon struck, Fr. Alfred Tuyay, Parish Priest of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage in Guijalo, Caramoan, Camarines Sur finally shared photos in the social media account of the parish. He posted pictures of the devastation brought by the storm surges that destroyed the houses of many parishioners. On the brighter side, documentation of the on-going disaster response and rehabilitation of shelters were also shared.

“On the 1st of November, Super Typhoon Rolly (internationally known as Goni), said to be the world’s most powerful tropical cyclone this year 2020, brought upon torrential rains, violent winds, mudslides and storm surges to Luzon, also affecting the municipality of Caramoan where our parish is located. Typhoon Rolly was quickly followed by Tropical Storm Tonyo from the 5th to the 8th of November. Furthermore, Category-4 Typhoon Vamco (Ulysses) formed its eyewall in Caramoan! Typhoon Ulysses continued to rage and caused destruction for 17 hours when its eye stayed longer and longer,” Fr. Tuyay recalls.

Fr. Alfred Tuyay, Parish Priest of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage distributes food packs to the parishioners in Guijalo, Camarines Sur and neigboring barangays covered by the parish.

The parish is located at Guijalo, Caramoan and it is composed of these barangays : Guijalo, Pag-Olinan, Canatuan, Patag-San Vicente, Colongcogong (with Sitios Rongos and Mabuhay), Cabacongan, and Pandanan. The residents living here were severely damaged by the typhoons, leaving 1,513 families in despair.

“Most of the houses near the shores were washed out due to storm surges. While the roofs of the houses far from the shore and the covered courts were blown away by the strong winds, rocks and other debris from the destroyed part of the port were scattered everywhere, making some parts of it inaccessible. Telecommunications were disrupted, causing difficulty in communicating for help,” shares Fr. Alfred.

The parish community is thankful for the assistance given by Caritas - Caceres, the Barangay Council, other groups and individuals who distributed food packs to the affected families.

Today, says Fr. Alfred Tuyay, the parish is slowly recovering. Houses and fishing boats are being rebuilt by the residents, organizations conducted clean up drives, and distribution of food packs are currently on-going. Many families still need housing and livelihood assistance.

The Parish of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage will welcome any help that the reader will send as it rises from the devastation. “Your loving help will bring consolation and comfort that the Lord’s presence is indeed with us,” appeals Fr. Alfred.

Please visit the Facebook page of their parish to view the photos at ‘Caramoan - Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage’

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