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St. Mary's holding a goods drive for typhooon victims in the Philippines

St. Mary's Parish in Ladysmith is collecting donations such as canned food, clothing and toiletries this week.

Ladysmith residents who would like to help the victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines are being asked to support an emergency relief drive this week at St. Mary’s.

“The Filipino community on Vancouver Island has banded together and appeal to their friends locally for help,” states a press release from St. Mary’s Parish. “St. Mary’s Parish is assisting them by collecting essential items.”

St. Mary’s Parish states the most immediate and effective form of assistance is money to an international charity of your choice, and St. Mary’s works with Development and Peace.

After money, a goods drive such as this one is also very helpful.

St. Mary’s Parish is collecting items such as good, clean sandals, shoes and sneakers; summer clothing, including rainwear; blankets; toiletries; canned foods and small utensils. These items will be shipped to the Philippines and, there, given to the Red Cross.

Donations will be from now until Friday from 3-7 p.m. and Saturday (Nov. 23) from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at St. Mary’s Church Hall at 1135 Fourth Ave. in Ladysmith.

St. Mary’s asks that people please do not leave goods outside. If the collection times are unsuitable, people can contact the Mulrooneys at 250-245-4384 or the Sheahans at 250-924-6814 to make arrangements.

“We want to support these people who have been affected drastically by a horrific typhoon,” said John Mulrooney from St. Mary’s. “Thousands have died, and the houses of thousands of others have been wiped out or badly damaged. This is a huge disaster, and we feel obligated as citizens of the global village to assist.”

Mulrooney says there is a significant number of Filipino people in our community and in St. Mary’s Parish.

“We have a member whose house was lost; there family was OK,” he said. “That kind of brings it home and makes it real to us.”

According to the BBC, Typhoon Haiyan on Nov. 8 killed at least 3,974 people, while a further 1,186 are missing, with about 500,000 people homeless.

It has been reported that Typhoon Haiyan was one of the most powerful typhoons ever recorded.

“Super Typhoon Haiyan has brought widespread flooding, landslides and destruction to the Philippines, destroying thousands of homes as it tracked across the Visayas region of central Philippines on its path through the country,” states the Canadian Red Cross.

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