LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - It is a familiar scene for Heifer International. Chief Operations Officer Steve Denne of Heifer International said, "Most households were damaged. Roofs blown off, we had loss of livestock, buildings that were blown down."
Last December the development organization was in the Philippines when Typhoon Boufa hit land. Now, eleven months later staff from the organization is in a similar predicament. Denne says, "We have two staff based there. We haven't been able to be in contact with them."
Heifer International works to provide livestock and agricultural training to improve the lives of those struggling for reliable sources of food and income. "The basic premise is to enable people at community level to prepare themselves so that they're not wholly dependent on outside assistance in the case of a disaster," said Denne.
After last year's typhoon, the company learned some valuable lessons and took proactive measures for the most recent super typhoon Haiyan. "We mobilized our staff and contacted all our project partners and connected with people at community level at least before the storm hit on Wednesday," Denne explained.
Heifer International is currently working with about 1,200 families in the central region, but they are not sure on the extent of the damage to life or property. Denne added, "When it will be possible to travel I expect we'll supplement our staff with others in other areas to help carry them through this immediate response time."
To donate, visit Heifer's Disaster Rehabilitation Fund, which is set up for precisely these kinds of situations.