By EUNICE HOW
(Feb. 2, 2022) — Super Typhoon Rai, also known as Typhoon Odette, slammed into the Philippines on Dec. 12, 2021, killing more than 400 people and affecting 7.8 million Filipinos as it traveled over 11 regions. Torrential rains, violent winds, landslides and storm surges left many communities leveled, houses, schools and public buildings destroyed and extreme shortages of water, food and electricity.
The Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance/AFL-CIO (APALA) and the Solidarity Center/AFL-CIO are asking for your financial help to assist these working people to help meet their day-to-day needs and to rebuild their communities.
TAKE A STAND — Please contribute to this national campaign to raise funds for those impacted by Super Typhoon Rai/Odette. All funds will be wired directly to the Philippine federation SENTRO (acronym for organization translated to Center of United Progressive Workers). Electronic donations can be made through Seattle APALA’s PayPal. Donation via check may be made out to APALA, with “typhoon relief” in the memo, and mailed to APALA, P.O. Box 84269, Seattle, WA 98124. For more information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Global Climate Risk Index 2015 listed the Philippines as the number one country in the world most affected by climate change. Super Typhoon Rai/Odette wiped out $266 million worth of agricultural goods and $80 million in damages to the fisheries sector. Approximately 154,000 farmers and fisherfolk have been affected, many of whom are already laboring under difficult conditions given the worldwide economic crisis and the pandemic.
While many organizations and international aid have come to help the Filipino people, we know the labor movement is one of the most organized sectors worldwide — and the Philippines is no different — they mobilized immediately to address the needs of workers and their communities. Over the past few years, APALA has been working with SENTRO, which represents more than 80,000 members in the private, public and informal sectors, including migrant workers, women and youth and is committed to social movement trade unionism by organizing in various sectors and industries.
Already, Seattle APALA and A Legacy of Equality Leadership and Organizing (LELO) raised $6,000 for the purchase of a generator for a district in Cebu, Philippines. With that generator, SENTRO is half-way towards meeting its goal in that district of providing clean water to 100 families as well as providing rice.
The task of rebuilding the impacted areas, especially in a sustainable and effective way with the participation of the workers and their communities, will take years. However, we can begin today to join with the Filipino people in their efforts.
Thank you for making a generous donation toward this cause.
Eunice How is President of the Seattle chapter of APALA, the organization’s largest chapter in the nation. Learn more here.