Why this 10-year-old feels prepared for the next typhoon
MANILA, Philippines - Felicity Lumongsod,10, knows that typhoons are inevitable. She has experienced them her whole life.
But with the intensity and frequency of typhoons increasing, she is understandably anxious about what to do when the next strong typhoon is headed for her village, in Barangay Libertad, Ormoc City.
It takes her back to the time where they experienced the wrath of Typhoon Ruby (Hagupit).
“During the typhoon, it rained for 3 days. The water entered our room, drenching our mattresses,” she recalled.
“When we returned to our house, I saw a lot of fallen trees. We didn’t have much food or clothing. We used candles to light our nights,” Felicity shared.
Together with her classmates and other children in their community, she took part in a 3-day training held by World Vision.
“Along with other community based interventions, World Vision has identified child based disaster risk reduction as a key step in families moving forward towards greater resilience,” says Dineen Tupa, Response Director at World Vision’s typhoon Haiyan response.
Tupa added: “Preparedness is not just about physical assets like evacuation centers and early warning systems. It’s about the safety of knowing what to do when disasters strike. Where to go, how to reconnect with people if you are separated."
Felicity seemed excited and empowered with the knowledge she gained from the training.
“Before we didn’t talk about the things we need to do when there is a typhoon on it’s way. Through this training, I learned that children play a vital role in preparing for typhoons,” she said.
The activities were designed into 4 categories for the different age groups that participated. Felicity’s group learned about hazard mapping.
“I listened intently to the discussions. There were lots of activities so it made the learning fun. One thing I learned is to prepare (what we call) a "go bag" which would contain things like a flashlight, batteries, canned goods, medicine, first aid kit, and important documents like birth certificates,” she described.
Felicity added: “I even taught my 3-year-old brother about preparing things that are important to bring if we were evacuated. Even he understood. When I asked him what he would bring, he said 'My milk!' I was happy that he understood,” she said.
“It is important for us to know what to prepare for the next typhoon. It could save our lives if one is headed for our place again," she concluded. - Rappler.com
Jennina June Leira S. Lanza is Communications Officer for World Vision - Typhoon Haiyan Response.
World Vision is a Project Agos partner.