Lily and Jeralin are close friends and neighbours.
They lived together in Caibiran on Biliran Island in the Philippines. When Tropical Storm Urduja hit their area, it caused a massive landslide that destroyed everything in its path.
Lily explained that it had already been raining for four to five days when the storm hit. The community had come together to put out sand bags to prevent water coming into the homes but they were not expecting the water to rise like it did.
As they were packing some clothes to leave their home, Lily was swept away by the torrent of water. Luckily her husband was able to catch her a few houses down. She was so shaken from the experience though that she was trembling and unable to speak.
Lily and her family managed to get to Jeralin’s house. Jeralin had been home sick in bed and wasn’t able to pack anything when her husband ran in and said they had to go quickly.
The two families ran for safety together but were very frightened.
When the landslide hit, Jeralin told us that it felt like a big earthquake. As they were running to safety, one of Jeralin’s children went missing.
With tears in her eyes she explained how scary it was in that moment. Thankfully the family was reunited, but the community lost many people in this terrible disaster.
Both women said every time in rains now, all of the memories come back and they are very scared. They lost everything, including all of their animals so they are in a very difficult situation.
With their ShelterBox tent though, they felt safe and happy.
‘I was so happy to have a home again,’ said Lily,when thinking of their ShelterBox tent.
The families who received ShelterBox tents in Caibiran have now been relocated to Government housing where they can continue to rebuild their lives.
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