Impressions from the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan

Beginning of December I went to the Philippines to document the delivery of relief goods for typhoon victims, which were funded by the Germany based NGO Kaibigan and to make first enquiries which help people need in order to start a living again. Relief goods were brought to Talinhugon, a small village around 50km from Tacloban and to Cambalading which is near Ormoc at the west coast of Leyte.

The area left destroyed by typhoon Haiyan is so huge that it seems almost surreal to drive around for hours, without seeing any house which would not at least be partly damaged. What is not surreal at all but very real instead, is to meet the people who face their situation with incredible courage and who are thankful for any help provided. What astonishes me each time again when coming to the Philippines is the kindness, with which people welcome foreigners, even if their situation would fully justify their concentration only on own concerns.

The following images show the situation beginning of December as well as the help provided. Further down I also put up images from other areas and projects in which Kaibigan is involved.

01Phils 2013

Approaching Tacloban the destruction left behind by typhoon Haiyan gets worse and worse.

02Phils 2013

Ten year old Richie walks through the ruins of his district at the coast of Tacloban.

03Phils 2013

According to eyewitnesses the wave which overrun Tacloban was as high as the third storey of the building in the back of Richie.


04Phils 2013

In Cambalading Albin rests on a door in a ruin of one of the houses of his village.

05Phils 2013

A boy plays in a ruin in his village Cambalading.

06Phils 2013

Helpers pack relief goods for distribution.

07Phils 2013

08Phils 2013

Gunel (l.) and Win-Win eat lunch from the feeding program.

09Phils 2013

Sandy is one of the first starting to rebuild his house in the midst of the destroyed coconut palms.

10Phils 2013

Most men living in Cambalading are fishermen, who lost their boats in the storm. Providing them with new boats is the first step to enable them to start working again.

11Phils 2013

View from the plane on the way from Manila to Cebu.

12Phils 2013

At night time Brother Paul drives around offering psychological help to sex workers or simply being receptive to their concerns.

13Phils 2013

One of the singers of a children’s choir rides a jeepney on her way to a performance.

14Phils 2013

A boy attends a ‘child rights and protection’ event funded by the European Union in Cebu.

15Phils 2013

An old clock lies on the path leading up the Smokey Mountain. The Smokey Mountain is the former dumpsite of Manila.

16Phils 2013

At the foot of the Smokey Mountain children work separating metal from plastic for recycling purposes.

Middle: Mary-Rose

Mary-Rose (m.) is working in the charcoal production which is now located on the top of the Smokey Mountain.

18Phils 2013

People on the Smokey Mountain work days, months and years breathing the smoke from the burned wood which is extremely harmful to their health.





21Phils 2013

Children from the district of Smokey Mountain sing in a choir.

22Phils 2013

A girl from Smokey Mountain takes part in an evening class.

23Phils 2013

Two boys showing the camera their almost supernatural strength

24Phils 2013

A boy flies through the air as he is thrown by some of his friends for an acrobatic performance.


Link to this article Posted on 2. February 2014