Michelle Bedford photos Sunday’s fundraiser to help victims of the typhoon that struck the Philippines last month drew an outpouring of support at the Genelle Hall. From top left and clockwise; a wide array of baked goods were donated; musician Ray Bouliane served up sweet sounds to supporters; Liz Liblong

Greater Trail community responds to call to help Filipino families

A fundraiser to help survivors in the Philippines after a devastating typhoon raised $3,300 Sunday afternoon.

A fundraiser to help survivors in the Philippines after a devastating typhoon hit the island country last month, has left Siony Thompson humbled and a little teary.

Thompson, a retired nurse from Genelle, organized the event on behalf of the West Kootenay Filipino Canadian Society and was overwhelmed with the turnout that brought in $3,300 Sunday afternoon.

“I am so overwhelmed and happy with all the support I feel like crying,” she said. “The weather did not stop anyone from coming and the hall was full with so many people who stayed right to the end.”

Thompson said the money will be divvied up between seven families in the affected areas who have relatives in Greater Trail and Christina Lake.

“We have the means to get the money to the affected people right away,” she explained. “We have the families’ addresses and will be sending the money directly by electronic transfer,” said Thompson.

“All we have to do is phone them and within minutes they will have the money.”

According to the latest reports, the Philippine government estimates that nationwide, the death toll from Typhoon Haiyan, which hit the region on Nov. 8, stands at 3,982 with 1,602 still missing and more than 200,000 homes destroyed, with over one million people displaced.

“I’ve seen people who live in the affected areas on the TV,” said Thompson. “All they have is a bag of rice and a few cans of sardines for their families to survive,” she continued.

“The money we raised will help to feed the families we know and maybe they can start rebuilding their homes.”

Another fundraiser is planned for this weekend at a local eatery. Carole Dasti, owner of Huckleberry’s Cafe on Old Waneta Road is hosting a silent auction in the restaurant on Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. For information call 368-3346 or 693-1576.

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