Disaster strikes regularly in a variety of ways .
Whether Earthquake , Fire , Sunami or Wind Storms , people find themselves at the mercy of the elements . Many Countries have Volunteer Organisations that are prepared to swing into action once the danger has been recognised .Even though the destroyed area has their own " Volunteer Organisations " , many of those people will be searching for their family and relatives thus not contributing to their community as effectively as needed ?
Many countries have volunteer Organisations that have disparate purposes , created in earlier emergencies . The UK has about 16 Major organisations , such as OXFAM , but , the nature of the Philippines Disaster has seen them combine under an " Umbrella Organisation " , namely D E C ! Today SKY News are at the Bicester Warehouse in Bicester , near Oxford . This is a warehouse that i have worked at , more than a decade ago , assisting in the work , needed to prepare the the consignments that are held in readiness for the next Major Disaster . Today 16 tons of Water , Food and other Relief Supplies will be sent to the Disater Zone . The replacement cost of these supplies are reported to be GBP200k . Oxfam run a chain of " Charity Shops " , where you can find " Used Clothes and Household Goods " , as well as some New Products that appeal to the " impulse buyer ". THe income from these Shops is only part of their income , so they must rely on Donations from Major Appeals as well as ongoing commitments by those that choose to donate from salary or their Bank Account by regular remittance . Most of these scheduled payments allow Tax Relief to be paid direct to the Charity .
@noynoyaquino, In my name and on behalf of the people of #Israel,I wish to extend our deepest condolences to the people of the #Philippines
Caritas , the Catholic Organisation , also acts promptly , throughout the world , to assist in Disaster Relief . Today , i spoke with their Innsbruck Office , as i had wished to suggest an idea , that i thought useful in helping some of the survivors . My proposal will be a longer term project that i hope will assist people on the ground restore their " broken bikes " , rather than toss them in the rubbish . Immediately , Caritas needs people to open their Purse Strings , since Cash can buy in other parts of Asia , ALL thee Relief Supplies and Clothing , that so many are willing to part with in the effort to assist . Clothes and Blankets are needed , BUT, they will need Transport and then they will need sorting for size and distribution . Tedious Chores that can be dealt with a little further down the track . Four days of little food and water will determine Peoples'priorities ! Currently the devastated areas are suffering from access being difficult if not impossible , due to fallen palm trees and Storm debris of every kind . Remote areas appear to be ONLY accessable by Helicopter .
This brings me to a point of personal frustration . Helicopters are a scarce resource , they can only work so many hours , before needing downtime for maintainance . Helicopters can only carry so much , yet i am continously seeing Major News Networks , using these scarce resources to " swan around " seeking THEIR OWN EXCLUSIVE perspective/story "! Each time they need 2 or 3 people to do the report , that is about 80kg each , say 200kg of RELIEF SUPPLIES , not delivered , because " the face " wants to appear on YOUR SCREEN ! Do i care if i see the same story repeated on 15 or 20 separate News Channels ? NO I Don't ! Especially when it is the choice of carrying 200kg of Food & Water to those in NEED ! Just think about the fact that 200kg of supplies , that could help thousands went UNDELIVERED ! CNN , Aljazeera , BBC World , SKYnews ,RTnews , France 24 ,CCTV , CNBC , to name just a few of the networks i can access , are ALL SAYING THE SAME THING ! The Philippines People are in Desparate NEED of HELP !
Yesterday i saw on TV , the US Marines arrive at an airport , Tacloban in the Philippines , in the background , we saw a Forklift truck unloaded , whilst the Interview was being shown . Later in the day we heard that the Airport was closed at nightfall ! No electricity ! OOPS ! Who would have thought about Electricity ? Certainly not the Marines ! RESULT , Airport closed through the Night , as there were NO runway lights . Not the Marines fault , BUT , should they not have access to at least portable Genies ? Those that choose to go back to earlier Blog Posts of Mine will have seen , my take on the Haiti Disaster !
Later i will post the links to the posts where i suggested PREPAREDNESS for DISASTER !
AS promised links to my Haiti Posts and a few of my comments :
" Earlier this week I stated that the Paratroopers could parachute into the situation, well they arrived in comfort on Saturday but in the interim we were treated to a spectacularly difficult scene of discord "
" WHY I a civilian has to ask the question “ if 3500 Paratroops are mobilised ,WHY is it they have not parachuted into the Haiti disaster Area and delivered aid , whether First Aid or rounding up the transport to move people?
3500 paratroops trained to jump into any environment , 60+hrs after the disaster still not in Haiti?"
Yesterday it was revealed that the SS George Washington , in company with 5 support ships , would depart Hong Kong for deployment in the Philippines . With Helicopters as part of the Fleet requirements on a daily basis , there will be a tremendous boost to those suffering deprivationn due to the Storms aftermath . Had the Pentagon thought to have a " Disaster Capability / Response Cache " onboard , then Canvas , Water desalination equipment , generators , as well as food and Water would be available for landing as fast as the Helicopters could be turned around . 24 hr capability should be possible from a floating city ?
CNN reports that the Mayor of a Village/Town biked from his place to the regional City , to report the Disaster that his people were enduring . The Roads were closed to vehicles , so he demonstrated initiative and carried the bike around road blockages .
Bikes will be part of the problem solving means of transport , for so many people in the next months . So many vehicles are shown , destroyed , upside down and displaced in the News , but even undamaged , they are of little use until the roads are opened once again .
My proposal to Caritas was to act as a conduit to receive in the Philippines , bike parts . Most Cyclists will have in their garage a variety of Parts , taken from their best bikes , as they upgraded , then put aside for future use ? I am like others , i rarely throw out parts , knowing that early replacement can save embarassment when i am at the Giro d'Italia or the Tour de France . My parts alone , will be of use to NOONE ! However if they are combined with those from other Race Cyclists , Suburban Cyclists , Cycling Clubs , Bike Shops , then they will add up to a useful supply of parts that can be forwarded to a Philippine receiving point . Caritas appealing to their Parishners and Media in Each Province in Austria could collect a sizable amount of parts , that either Austrian Air or a Freight forwarder could despatch to Manila , where local volunteers , could having created a Website , fill the needs of individuals that need parts to put their broken bikes back on the road . This plan obviously relies on bike savvy volunteers , at each end of the supply chain . No point sending from manila a front derailleur , when it was a rear that was needed ?
Building up the damaged bikes will need volunteers , some will be shop owners , whose premises and stock will have been destroyed , others will be unemployed people , wishing to learn new skills . Perhaps some will be on the US Fleet and will enjoy offering their help in their spare time ashore ? Each year " Fatcyclist.com " runs Hundred miles of nowhere to raise funds for the LiveSTRONG Charity , i recall that some participants were afloat on an Aircraft Carrier , maybe on the SS George Washington , there are bike enthusiasts with the tools to join in ?
On the way home from my ride from Schwaz , i stopped off at an International Conglomerate , who are very active in local charity work . I proposed they think on this scheme , since they have their OWN CYcling Club . In addition , i suggested they speak with their corporate HQ and ask that they consider donation of some Heavy Equipment . Big Ask that , but , unless the proposal goes forward , who else will think of this ?
With my visibility on this Blog , Twitter , Facebook and LinkedIn , i can only propose ideas . By myself i can only contribute dollars & less than useful equipment , BUT , in tandem with those that read this , possibly there are ways to help others !
HELP ME to HELP OTHERS !
Some Tweets :
More than 2 million people need food aid, the #Philippines gov said. Nearly 300,000 of them are pregnant women or new mothers. #Haiyan @CNN
U.S. Sends Aircraft Carrier to Bolster #Philippines Relief Efforts @USNavy #TyphoonHaiyan http://www.maritime-executive.com/article/US-Sends-Aircraft-Carrier-to-Bolster-Philippines-Relief-Efforts-2013-11-12/ …
#TyphoonHaiyan: Australians can donate to the Red Cross #Philippines appeal by visiting the @RedCrossAU website http://www.redcross.org.au
2m jobs destroyed after #Haiyan, $12bn loss to #Philippines economy http://ow.ly/qJftr @channelnewsasia ht @UNDP #YolandaPH
Listening to #NPR this morning on the ground in the #Philippines and my heart is broken. Praying for God's deliverance and provision.