Juneau’s Filipino Community raises $21,000 for typhoon relief

IMG_3294

IMG_3297

IMG_3300

Capture

IMG_3313

IMG_3324

IMG_3323

IMG_3321

IMG_3317

IMG_3308

IMG_3327

Tickets cost $15 per plate, but some people were giving up to $100 for one ticket. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Several members of the current Juneau assembly helped serve food at the Filipino fundraiser dinner. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Dante Reyes, President of Filipino Community, Inc. (right), says part of the funds will go to Kalibo, Juneau’s sister city in the Philippines. Kalibo is located in Aklan province, parts of which were damaged by Typhoon Haiyan. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

The Filipino Community Hall was packed Saturday night. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Juneau representative Cathy Munoz helped serve food in the Filipino Community Hall. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Kids sing along to the entertainment. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Members of the Word of Life Christian Center singing group. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Members of the Word of Life Christian Center singing group performed at the fundraising dinner. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Filipino Community, Inc. were also selling tee-shirts to raise money for the typhoon relief effort. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Juneau representative Beth Kerttula was one of the night’s auctioneers. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

As of 6:15 Saturday evening, more than $17,000 was raised. By the end of the evening, that figure went over $21,000. (Photo by Lisa Phu/KTOO)

Juneau’s Filipino community will contribute more than $21,000 to the relief effort for victims of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. That’s the amount raised during Saturday’s fundraising dinner.


The dinner was scheduled to start at 5 pm but by 4:45, there was already a line of people waiting outside the Filipino Community Hall in downtown Juneau.

By 5:15, the building was packed. “It’s pretty busy,” says Mayden Cristobal, who was selling tickets. “We are swamped. There’s a lot of people and we have a lot of donations.”

Tickets cost $15 per plate. “Some were paying $50 and some were giving out $100 bill for a $15 plate dinner,” says Dante Reyes, president of Filipino Community, Incorporated.

Shortly after Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines November 8th, the non-profit decided to cancel its annual free Thanksgiving Day meal and, instead, hold a fundraising dinner and auction.

State legislators and past and present assembly members stood with members of Filipino Community, Inc to help serve food to about 515 people. The evening brought in more than $21,000. Reyes says some of the gifts were very personal, like Gabriel Kelley’s donation. Reyes says Kelley was raising money for his own trip to France and decided to give half of it to the fundraiser.

“I opened the envelope and I was very, very surprised with the amount. It was a $1,000 check,” describes Reyes. “I am not an emotional person but at the time I am holding back something. Somebody – not a Filipino, not related to a Filipino – instead of having that for himself, he shared it to those who need that big amount of money in the Philippines.”

A portion of the total money raised will go to Juneau’s sister city in the Philippines, Kalibo, which is in Aklan province. “Aklan, too, was damaged by Typhoon Haiyan,” explains Reyes. “It is also on the path of Typhoon Haiyan going out of the Philippines. And it also has devastated not only homes and properties but also some human lives.”

Josielind Ferrer is on the Filipino Community, Inc. board of directors. Ferrar is from the Visayas region, one of the areas hardest hit by Haiyan. Almost every Filipino at the fundraiser was affected in some way by the typhoon.

“We are doing okay,” says Ferrer. “As far as mental, emotional, we are hanging in there. We’re all strong, keeping everybody strong for each other, but with the help of the community – the whole Juneau community – this is definitely giving us more of a boost.”

She says she was overwhelmed by how many people were at the dinner, especially since it was such a last minute event, “but it looks like, just like the Filipino community, Filipinos managed to put it all together and hang in there and like they say, rise up Philippines, and we will do that.”

Reyes says funds will go to a few different organizations, including an international foundation based in the US and Philippines, Catholic Relief Services, and Red Cross.

 

Comments

comments