WJR checks on typhoon aid

By Sandy Rashty, January 20, 2014

Two World Jewish Relief employees are on an “emotional” visit to the Philippines, delivering support packs to victims of last year’s Typhoon Haiyan.

The British-based aid charity has raised around £600,000 for the cause and Joe Weber and Stacey Swimer have visited an affected fishing village, overseeing the delivery of welfare packs. Their trip is part of the charity’s commitment to “transparency”, said Ms Swimer, WJR’s director of international programmes and partnerships.

“We’ve met a lot of grassroots organisations here,” Ms Swimer added. “The Philippines is one of the highest prone disaster areas in the world. People are still really emotional. It’s heartbreaking.”

Mr Weber, the emergency programmes manager for the Philippines, said victims had appreciated WJR’s support.

“People are really grateful for help in this time of need,” he said. “They have quietly come up to shake us by the hand. It has been really moving. It’s also really good to see the way our funds have been used to meet the needs of the people. The community is really on edge. Over the years they’ve had a number of typhoons, but this has just battered them.”

WJR estimates that its support, focused on shelter and food, has reached 77,000 people.

Last updated: 10:45am, January 20 2014