For Marvin, a resident of Mayorga, Leyte, a single word best describes Super Typhoon Yolanda.
“Chaos,” he says. “The entire town was in chaos. After Yolanda, we experienced so many challenges and difficulties…”
The hard-hit coastal municipality experienced widespread destruction, seeing damage to basic government infrastructure: including the local civic center, municipal hall and public market.
Lorelyn Cochero, a local market vendor, says she believes that Yolanda was one of the most difficult and challenging experiences of her life.
“Afterwards, we don’t know where to go,” she says. “Our market was badly hit. We were like squatters, but we had to continue selling. Otherwise, how could we make enough money to eat?”
Rebuilding the town
With support from RAY DILG funds, the municipal hall was repaired in what locals describe as a ‘smooth and seamless’ recovery.
“The repair of our municipal building greatly improved and enabled us to provide the basic services in our community. A well-structured municipal building enabled the local government to regain the trust and confidence of the people. I expected a more resilient and better-looking municipal building. All these were met,” Ma. Aida C. Elaba says.
At the local market, “market stalls now are all organized,” Lorelyn explains.
We are very thankful because our fish, meat and vegetable sections were repaired. Our market looks orderly than before.”
Nearby at the civic center, “we are very happy that our center received funding assistance for the repair works,” Marvin says. “Playing basketball and other sports activities are part of our pastime, and our way of life. It is like a cure for our sadness.”
“Yolanda taught us lessons about the importance of preparedness,” Marvin adds. “The Waray-Waray people are not afraid of typhoons. You cannot see fear on their faces. Even after the typhoon, people were still happy, but through this experience we realized how important is it for us to be aware and ready at all times most especially in times of calamities.”