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HK OFWs start fund drive for Taal victims

13 January 2020

By The SUN
Thick volcanic ash covers entire houses in Agoncillo, Batangas (photo from DWC)

At least two groups in Hong Kong have launched a fund drive for those displaced by the eruption of Taal volcano in Batangas, Philippines. Taal, considered as the country’s second most active volcano, last erupted in 1977.

Thousands of people have been evacuated from areas around the volcano in Talisay town, amid warnings a more explosive eruption could take place in the next few days.
The entire province of Batangas has been placed in a state of calamity, but many other areas in nearby Cavite and Laguna have also been badly affected. The thick ash spewed by the volcano reached as far as Quezon City, which is about 100 km to the north.

Batangas Varsitarian International Hong Kong, led by Erwin Marqueses, was among the first to appeal for help for those affected by the eruption. He posted an announcement on Facebook asking Filipino community leaders and members for donations, particularly of canned goods, noodles, instant coffee, biscuits, face masks, blankets, towels and soap. “All those things that you think can help,” he said. Cash is also accepted.
He asked donors to go to Worldwide House this Sunday, Jan. 19, between 9am and 1pm, where the goods will be packed in boxes and sent immediately to Batangas. All cash donations will be used to buy goods that will also go into the boxes.

All the relief goods will be sent to former HK Filcom leader and Bagong Bayani recipient Joseph Bautista, said to be the current chief of the Coast Guard in Batangas. Those who want to send donations directly to him may also do so through this address:

Director, 502nd Squadron CGADSTL
Coast Guard District Southern Tagalog Headquarters
Port Area, Sta Clara, Batangas City, Philippines
An online group made up mostly of newly arrived OFWs in Hong Kong, the Domestic Workers Corner, has also begun soliciting donations for casualties of the eruption.

The fund drive was begun by the group’s founder Rodelia Villar, after several DWC members who hail from the affected areas posted photos of  the devastation in their hometowns, along with appeals for prayers.

DWC is asking for cash donations to be sent through WeChat, TNG and Alipay, which in turn will be sent directly to one of its administrators, Jazzy, who will take charge of buying the needed relief goods so they can be sent immediately to the victims. Those who wish to help may check out the announcement on their Facebook page: DWC Help Group.

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