3rd year commemoration
VICKY C. ARNAIZ
PALO, Leyte- Trinidad Barbosa could still poignantly recall the harrowing experience that she and her family went through when supertyphoon ‘Yolanda’ ripped through the region in 2013.
Barbosa was rendered widow after her husband died when their house collapsed due to the pounding of strong winds and heavy rain generated by Yolanda, the worst typhoon ever witnessed by world.
While their lives, to count her eight children, were clear in danger, Barbosa said that they could not just leave her dead husband inside at their destroyed house in Barangay Guadalupe, a coastal village in Baybay City.
Her husband, suffering from a debilitating ailment, was already dead even before Yolanda made its landfall
“I am sickly and it kept my children worried. I don’t want to leave my deceased husband alone in the house. I kept on crying that my son had to carry me to transfer to the evacuation center,” Barbosa, 52, in a heart wrenching narration said.
She said her children tied her husband to the bed then tied it to another bed. After the fury of Yolanda waned around 12 noon, she found there was nothing left of their belongings except the bed and her husband.
“All were washed out,” recalled Barbosa, whose story left the audience misty-eyed.
Barbosa was among those who participated and narrated their stories related to the onslaught of Yolanda dubbed as “Yolanda survivors: Show and Tell” organized by the Eastern Visayas Region Librarians Council (EVRLC) on Thursday (Oc.7) in this town.
The sharing of stories was done after the opening of the exhibit of photos and stories at the venue.
Elizabeth Mendoza, representative of Natalia Ilieva, executive assistant to the secretary-general of Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) said that “we are here to help you archive your stories so that others will learn from your experiences.”
Yolanda is considered as the world’s strongest typhoon to hit inland and hearing stories and archiving it is very important.
“We are here because you never wean the past. Life goes on and your stories are to be told in all forms of media. We have to broadcast, print and digitalized it,” Mendoza, director of Courseline Training Center (CTC) based in Cagayan Valley, said.
“If one has no Internet connection at least you have the printed materials in your hand,” she added.
Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union is an organization based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with 280 broadcaster-members across the world.
It is one of the organizations that immediately responded the call of help after the monster typhoon hit the Philippines.
Lately, CTC is doing literacy campaign on health education, disaster preparedness especially for the persons with disability (PWDs), media literacy and community education with the support from ABU.
Palo Mayor Remedios “Matin” Petilla graced the event and inspired the group of how her constituents were helping each other after the massive typhoon.
“Helping others would also heal ourselves,” she said.
The stories were heartbreaking which the members of the library association hope to published the book.
The activity was also in line with the celebration of the United Nations International Disaster Reduction Day on Oct. 13, 2016.