“Thank you, Convoy of Hope!” a group of men shouted while holding bags of groceries at a distribution center in the Philippine province of Pampanga. “Salamat, Convoy of Hope!” another group said in unison with smiles on their faces. Each of the 18 members in the group waved at our volunteers and expressed gratitude in their own language.
These individuals had just survived an exceptionally strenuous typhoon season in the Philippines.
In 2020, twenty-one tropical events struck the Philippines — six of them taking place in deadly succession over the span of just four weeks. The Philippines also fell victim to the most powerful tropical event of the year: Super Typhoon Goni.
According to the United Nations, approximately 24 million people were affected by flooding during the most recent typhoon season, leaving thousands of families displaced.
Thanks to our supporters, partners, and volunteers, Convoy of Hope gave help and hope to the Philippines as people began to rebuild and recover.
To date, Convoy of Hope has distributed 804,552 meals to 105,350 individuals across 63 different communities throughout the country. We’ve also had the opportunity to distribute thousands of family food kits, and provide both solar lamps and water filters to survivors.
We are grateful for the opportunity to provide help and hope to residents of the Philippines affected by this storm season. Together, we will continue to change lives around the world and provide hope in every storm.
December 17, 2020 | 9:30 a.m.
Central Luzon is now the main focus of our response. Individuals that have lost their jobs due to the pandemic now face the loss of their homes and livelihoods. The Convoy of Hope Philippines team will soon serve 1,500 families with food and needed supplies.At the end of this month, our in-country team will be receiving four containers of meals and air freight with tarps, wafers, and water bladders. This will help tremendously with distribution at a time when it is most needed.
Response by the Numbers
Family Food Kits Distributed
Solar Lamps Distributed
Water Filters Distributed
Churches, Partners & Organizations Resourced
December 8, 2020 | 9:55 a.m.
With the help of our supporters, the Philippines team can continue distributions as the need for disaster aid is still strong in some areas. For context, the last three storms to strike the islands have damaged or destroyed more homes than Hurricane Katrina. Two teams continue to serve communities in Bicol and Sorsogon. As one of them returns back to base, the other will be distributing relief supplies in the province of Aurora throughout the end of the week.
December 2, 2020 | 10:40 a.m.
Many communities in the Philippines have yet to receive help after Typhoons Molave, Goni, and Vamco barreled across the country. In-country Convoy of Hope teams are deploying to vulnerable communities among the islands in our continued efforts to help those affected.
November 30, 2020 | 4:45 p.m.
Convoy of Hope team members in the Philippines continue to tirelessly serve communities affected by Typhoons Molave, Goni, and Vamco. Multiple teams are in the field distributing food, water filters, solar lanterns, and other essentials.
Response by the Numbers
Churches, Partners & Organizations Resourced
November 25, 2020 | 9 a.m.
It has been nearly two weeks since Typhoon Vamco struck the Philippines. The inclement weather has all but subsided, and many residents must somehow begin the process of rebuilding and recuperating.
Flood waters, which previously lapped at second and third stories of homes, have since dissipated. Much of the country is still slathered with a thick layer of mud that at one point covered entire cities and threatened to bury vehicles. Survivors, including more than 400,000 evacuees, waded through knee-deep mire while using shovels and buckets to dig for what was left of their submerged belongings.
Others did their best to communicate with loved ones despite power and internet outages — something that affected more than 3.8 million households. The death toll from Typhoon Vamco has risen to 67, and many people still remain unaccounted for.
Convoy of Hope teams have been hard at work distributing relief supplies and food packs to survivors. To date, they have served more than 345,000 meals to approximately 44,000 individuals affected by this storm. Additional support was dispatched to the Bicol, Bulacan, and Nueva Ecija provinces to continue providing relief in those areas.
November 20, 2020 | 11:30 a.m.
Convoy of Hope is happy to report that our in-country team in the Philippines made it safely home after taking shelter during Typhoon Vamco. Braving the approaching storm, our team in the Philippines knew there were people suffering from the effects of Typhoon Goni — which had destroyed so much a few short days before — and were out distributing relief supplies when Vamco struck.
We are extremely thankful they are safe and that the damage done to our warehouse was not severe. Our team is currently purchasing additional food and supplies and distributing them to families in the Cagayan Valley — one of the regions devastated by recent typhoons. They will continue the distributions in that area before returning next week to the Bicol Province that was severely affected by Typhoon Goni.
Response by the Numbers
Thank you for keeping our team and those we serve in your hearts and minds. Convoy of Hope remains committed to meeting as many needs as possible on your behalf.
November 12, 2020 | 4:30 p.m.
In recent weeks, the Philippines has been battered by multiple storms, severely damaging 54 Convoy of Hope program centers in the area. To our knowledge, more than 13,000 families that we regularly serve have been impacted by these storms.
Starting in late October, Typhoon Molave brought widespread flooding and displaced thousands of residents. Typhoon Goni (known within the Philippines as Super Typhoon Rolly), brought 195 mph winds and added to the damage and flooding Molave left behind.
Now, the Philippines is contending with yet another storm: Typhoon Vamco. Convoy of Hope teams are currently responding to needs generated by Typhoon Goni. Because they were already in the area, our staff — alongside the people we serve with — endured more than 5 grueling hours of intense rain and wind, fearing that the roof of their shelter would blow away. Thankfully, everyone survived and can continue serving those severely affected by these storms.
Although Typhoon Vamco is not as strong of a storm as its predecessors, it has struck at a particularly perilous time. The relentless and gruesome weather in the Philippines has left many people displaced or without adequate shelter. The Associated Press reports that Typhoon Goni singlehandedly damaged more than a quarter of a million homes, many of which were buried by volcanic mudflow. Since Typhoon Vamco made landfall on Wednesday, more than 187,000 residents have evacuated. Coastal areas braced for a 6-foot storm surge. Flood waters have continued to accumulate in areas that had no time to desaturate from previous storms.
Typhoon Vamco has presented an even greater risk to residents of the Philippines by knocking out power, blocking roadways, and halting efforts to rebuild from and respond to the previous disasters. Convoy of Hope’s International Disaster Services teams have been responding to the previous storms, and will continue to do so for Vamco once it is safe.
To follow our response to these storms, click here. Donations to assist our teams may be made here.
November 5, 2020 | 4:45 p.m.
It’s been less than a week since Super Typhoon Goni struck the Philippines as a Category 5 equivalent storm, but Convoy of Hope is already hard at work helping survivors. Watch this update from our team operating in the Bicol Province and see the ways you can make a tangible difference by partnering with Convoy of Hope.
November 2, 2020 | 5 p.m.
Super Typhoon Goni caused catastrophic damage in the Philippines. More than 400,000 people are reported to be displaced in the Bicol Province alone. Convoy of Hope Philippines team members are preparing supplies for an immediate response to this devastating storm.
November 1, 2020 | 3:10 p.m.
With sustained winds of up to 135 mph at landfall, Typhoon Goni — now Tropical Storm Goni — struck the Filipino island of Luzon, the country’s most populous island. The storm mostly missed the capital city of Manilla.
When Goni struck the Philippines early Sunday morning, winds had increased to 195 mph, making it equivalent to a dangerously strong Category 5 storm. Nearly 1 million people were evacuated as the typhoon suddenly intensified from 80 mph to 180 mph in less than 24 hours. It is considered the world’s strongest tropical cyclone for 2020 so far and the most powerful storm to hit the Philippines since Haiyan in 2013. While the storm has weakened for now, it is forecast to hit Vietnam later this week in the same areas recently hit by two other typhoons.
“A key bridge has collapsed, entire communities have lost contact, and it is too dangerous to go back in at this point due to flooding and threat of mudslides,” said David Hughart, one of Convoy of Hope’s in-country partners. “It’s hard to imagine the sudden flash flooding raging through a town and people sitting on the roof of a building hoping the building remains standing until they can be rescued.”
No international travelers currently are allowed into the Philippines due to COVID-19. Fortunately, Convoy of Hope’s team within the Philippines has reported that they are safe and will be sheltering at home for the storm. We are thankful for this hard-working team, who is simultaneously responding to the last storm, Molave, and will soon respond to Goni.