After only two full days of being a quasi refugee center, of sorts, life is returning back to normal at Rainbow. However, is it ever really normal? Not really. I brought the few families staying with us back to their homes today, but none of them are back to normal, as you can see from the photos here and in this album (http://goo.gl/5GzdV).
Once the shock and fear of the flooding subsides, there is an understandable desire for things to return to some kind of normalcy. A couple of observations after our short stint of temporary sheltering some of our extended Rainbow family— home really is where the heart is—
and the Filipino Bayanihan spirit is alive and well. Even though things are not in a good state—no power, mud all over, broken walls and torn up roofs, no sewer system and so on—everyone wants to be in their own place.
One of the Filipino cultural traits is called Bayanihan, which (loosely) expresses the idea of helping one another in a time of need. I realize it's not just a Filipino trait, but it's still extraordinary to see those whose homes are destroyed or damaged assisting others in the same situation, along with those not in the same situation helping those in need.
When I went to visit one our Rainbow family's home (orphans, but grown up now), the boys were off to another area devasted by the flood to help some friends clean up.
I'll not say much in this post, I'll let the photos do the talking ("a picture is worth..."). But one of the ways we are looking to help is with the rebuilding necessary for the families connected to Rainbow. We have no specific plans, although some initial assessment has been done, so we want to set aside funds as they come in for doing some rebuilding.
Most of the homes need new roofs (some were torn open to climb up on getting out of the water flooding in), and there are a few walls that need rebuilding.
Another dilemma is the sewer (drainage) problems, and rewiring and reestablishing power to homes.
There's a lot to be done in the coming weeks and months. How it will be done and who will be helping (many of our usual workers are invovled with their own homes or surrounding homes already) is not clear. So, we would appreciate prayer for wisdom, guidance and provision as we look for ways we can help.
If you want to help out in some way, please donate through our account (Rainbow- #511) at Shepherd's Staff, put a memo for "RVM Relief Fund". Thanks!