In this edition of UNited to Leave No One Behind, Glecerio, Virginia, Imelda, and Lisa--all survivors of Typhoon Odette – relate their common tale of terror from December 16 when the typhoon hit Siargao island. They have their own individual tales to tell too of how the typhoon has changed their lives, as they strive for the resilience needed to recover.
It is vital that their stories and those of other affected families are retold, recalled, remembered, until their needs are fully met and their recovery is complete. Otherwise, their number will add even more to the millions of Filipinos, who for various reasons have been left behind.
At the same time, this edition of our newsletter brings to you the uplifting story of April, a woman entrepreneur who has emerged from a double crisis—Typhoon Odette on top of COVID-19. April was able to rebuild her business, Collabox, which curates sustainable brands in Cebu City for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) action and social innovation, by implementing the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Business Continuity Plan.
Finally, we are proud to be part of the success story of Nilda, a member of the Bangsamoro Islamic Women Auxiliary Brigade (BIWAB), whose training from IOM and other partners gave her the courage to stand up to an abusive overseas employer and to make her way back to the Philippines to finish her education as a teacher.