Young survivors capture life in Tacloban 5 years after Yolanda

Micole Gerard Tizon
Five years after Super Typhoon Yolanda, we can see stories of recovery through the lens of survivors

MY PLAYMATE. Kim Froilan, 8, trying to catch fish for her family. 6 small fishes were already caught when the photo was taken. Photo by Jhonalyn Dela Rosa

CEBU CITY, Philippines – Five years after Super Typhoon Yolanda struck, young survivors aged 8 to 18, showed their own stories of recovery in the “Yolanda Retold” photo exhibit.

Postcards From Disaster (PFD) and Tukod Project, in partnership with various non-governmental organizations, spearheaded the exhibit for the survivors of Barangay Anibong, one of the hard-hit areas in Tacloban City. The Anibong coast was where 4 ships ran aground during the onslaught of Yolanda in Tacloban City. (WATCH: After Haiyan: The ship that stayed)

“Instead of us journalists, telling the story, we thought of providing them, the survivors, a platform where they can tell their stories,” said PFD co-founder Makoi Popioco.

Out of the 500 affected families in Anibong, only 200 have been relocated in sites with no access to water or electricity, and far away from their livelihood and schools. The situation has prompted residents to return to their homes where they are vulnerable to disasters. (READ: 5 years after Yolanda, 23% of houses for survivors occupied)

Five years after, nandoon pa rin, despite the fact that billions of pesos ‘yung donation na ibinigay sa gobyerno. Nandoon pa rin sila, living in a tsunami hazard zone,” added Popioco.

(Five years after, they’re still there, despite the fact that billions of pesos were donated to the government. They’re still there, living in a tsunami hazard zone.)

John Rey Dela Rosa, one of the survivors who volunteered to be a part of the exhibit, said he hoped the photos would convince authorities to provide quality housing and livelihood for the survivors.

“So that I could help, not just myself, but my community as well,” he said in a mix of Filipino and English. 

He added that posting their photos on social media would make people become more aware of the current situation of the survivors. (READ: [OPINION] Yolanda survivors have not forgotten)

“‘Pag abot ha gobyerno, may some na diri nagkaka-uruasya, kay about ngani ha kwarta, waray, diri na naabot hin komplete nga dapat, mahikadto ha mga tawo, na dapat buligan, sana, kung gusto niyo bumulig, bulig, hin kinasingkasing,” Dela Rosa said.

 (When it comes to the government, sometimes it is not in order, especially when it comes to money. It does not completely reach the people. If they would help, help wholeheartedly.)

Here are some of the photos: 

WOMEN HAVE THE POWER. Photo by Brian Kevin Felix

LIFE ALONG THE COAST. 475 families remain in the community which was declared a tsunami-hazard zone. Photo by Philip Jhunilo Cablao

I'D RATHER STAY. Romeo Vibbero, 68, still lives in Anibong, to avoid the humidity in the shelters. Photo by Jacqueline Francisco and Ma. Salvacion Francisco

BORN AFTER YOLANDA. 36 year old Sarah dela Peña gave birth to her second daughter, Danica, 4 months after the typhoon hit Tacloban City. Photo by Joebert Calinao

PLAYTIME. Photo by John Rey Dela Rosa

STRUGGLE. Eufemia Eguia, 67, battling with breast cancer, needed to purchase P10,000 worth of medicine when she was diagnosed two years ago. She was only able to acquire half of the needed medicine. Photo by Philip Jhunilo Cablao

TODAY'S CATCH. Roberto Villanueva returns home from fishing. Photo by Ernilyn Francisco

The exhibit will be in the Cube Wing of SM Seaside City Cebu until December 8. – Rappler.com