Despite DOST-PHIVOLCS lowering the alert status of the volcano and clearing the majority of at-risk towns safe for return, some families still stay behind evacuation centers as their hometowns remain under observation.
Displaced individuals who were able to return to check on their homes, pets, and livestock recount fissures excreting magma, and seas spewing smoke and steam.
“Many of us are too scared to go back home,” confessed Donna Maraigan, who originally resides in Lemery, Batangas – now still prohibited to entry. “We’re stranded here and don’t know what to do,” she added.
Meanwhile, Nonita Morados, 67 years old, recounted their terrifying escape from Agoncillo, Batangas, to an evacuation center in Gregorio Parabero Elementary School in Tuy. With the rural roads congested with frantic townspeople fleeing their homes, Nonita, along with her family and neighbors had no choice but to find a path over a mountain.
“It was suddenly so dark, and we could barely breathe because of the ash. Many times I would fall and get exhausted and frightened—you see, the ground was shaking, and lightning was striking nearby trees—but my husband kept picking me up and telling me to keep moving,” Nonita recalled.
Many evacuees in temporary shelters find unity in their shared circumstances. Families find ways to stay positive and keep a semblance of normalcy for their children whose lives will be forever impacted by this calamity. Relief packs, hygiene kits, kitchen utensils, and other necessary things keep our kababayans in these uncertain times.”
While Taal volcano may be showing signs of calm, a full recovery from its wrath will be an enormous task as well as adjustments for the displaced families. Let us continue helping them as they try to rebuild their lives from the ground up. For information about donations and volunteering efforts, kindly visit our Facebook page, or call these numbers: (02) 8-663-4701 / (02) 8-663-4710 / +63939-921-5543