Two weeks following the Tzu Chi’s cash assistance to affected Odette victims, the volunteers made a visit to those recipients who received cash as a way to start their lives anew. On February 9, 2022, Tzu Chi volunteers went to Tubigon to witness how the cash aid made improvements on their living and livelihood means.

Tubigon was one of the most affected towns in the aftermath of the super typhoon Odette where lots of homes, establishments and livelihood entails were ruined and destroyed. After the recipients received the cash assistance on January 29, Tzu Chi is very optimistic that the money given can help them to start all over again.

As Tzu Chi reached Tinangnan, Tubigon, Bohol, the team felt hospitality by the residents and were even very thankful for giving them help. Aside from the friendly and smiling faces they brought to us, volunteers also witnessed recipients who dedicated their time to do the labor in reconstructing their house.

A 30-year old man named Ronie Torrejas, whose wife works as a domestic helper abroad, and with the children under his custody, was very thankful for the cash aid received.

“I am so grateful that I was given cash assistance from Tzu Chi for this help in reconstructing my home. Because of their help, I was able to buy construction materials and it is really a big help for me. The money received was used in a good way. Thank you, Tzu Chi Foundation for helping me to recover and giving us money for our home needs. Thank you also to Master Cheng Yen for your love and helping us to stand again,” Torrejas stated as his smile was painted on his face.

Marlyn Quiroven, from the same place, wants to extend her thanks to Tzu Chi. Her husband works as a fisherman and has four children.

“I want to extend my biggest thanks to the Tzu Chi Foundation for giving us this cash aid. The money you gave was used in buying roofing materials and lumber, some were used to pay the enrollment fee of my daughter, and even helped to repair our pump boat. I am so thankful to Master Cheng Yen for the tons of your love. Tzu Chi Foundation provides a big help for us and I am so thankful for that!” said Marlyn.

After the interview, one woman approached us and spoke with her feelings how grateful and happy she was after receiving the aid. For the money spent much of help in terms of their livelihood means.

“Thank you very much Tzu Chi! Because of your financial aid, I was able to buy a pump boat which costs almost the same price as what I received. Your help would give us an inspiration to continue our livelihood means to gain income that could sustain our daily needs. My sincere thanks to Tzu Chi Foundation for choosing me as one of the beneficiaries. If I know how to use and post updates to social media, I’d would rather post my feelings about how thankful I am to receive love and help from Tzu Chi.” Said Fedelina Poquita, as she can’t help herself from falling down the tears.

As we walked a few meters from Fedelina’s home, we saw a 44-year old man named Nelson Espirito, who was at the top of the house doing the roof restoration and did it alone.

“The cash I received was used to purchase roofing materials and lumber. I did the repair all by myself from time to time since I am also a laborer and know how to do it. Let us keep fighting and moving in our lives to rise again from this calamity. Thank you Tzu Chi Foundation, thank you Master Cheng Yen!” Nelson testified with a wide smile on his face.

Tzu Chi would like to stay in touch with these people and how they can fight for their lives. Seeing them trying to fight and moving on become one of the Tzu Chi’s strengths to continue helping other people. In time, all Odette victims would surely recover and could start their lives all over again.