Super Typhoon Mangkhut (Local Name Ompong) left the Philippines with a trail of devastation which included landslides, deaths, damage to homes, and intermittent loss of power.
All missionaries from the Laoag, Cabanatuan, Cauayan, Baguio and Urdaneta Missions who were on the path of the typhoon were all safe and accounted for. Missionaries without electricity are being provided with solar lamps with chargers per companionship.
No members of the Church were reported killed or injured.
Ninety-six chapels or meetinghouses were used as evacuation centers which housed more than 4,000 evacuees composed of both members and those of other faiths. Priesthood leaders made sure to prepare food and water prior to the typhoon which were provided to all those who took shelter in the meetinghouses.
In a radio interview, the Provincial Governor of Cagayan expressed appreciation to the Church for opening its doors to evacuees.
Mission Emergency Plans were put to a test as mission presidents mobilized and left no stone unturned to make sure missionaries were in safe and secure locations, were transferred to higher ground, and had emergency kits with them at all times. All necessary precautions were covered by the mission leaders to prepare those in their care for the storm.
Rapid assessments were immediately done after the typhoon and currently, the Church is working with local vendors to secure food, water, and other basic supplies.
LDS Charities, the humanitarian arm of the Church, in coordination with the Helping Hands volunteers of the Church will be repacking relief goods starting today and in the next few days which will be distributed to highly affected areas.
3000 food kits will be distributed to Benguet Province, 2000 food kits for Cagayan Province while another 2000 kits will be distributed in the Ilocos Norte Province.
The staging centers for the repacking of goods will be in the Tuguegarao North Stake Center for Tuguegarao; Legarda Stake Center for Baguio; and San Nicolas Chapel for Laoag, Ilocos Norte.
The current emergency response initiative of LDS Charities is in partnership with Humanitarian Response Consortium, Alagang Kapatid Foundation, Kaya Natin Movement and Angat Buhay Program.
LDS Charities is the humanitarian arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Its purpose is to relieve suffering, foster self-reliance and provide opportunities for service. Sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, LDS Charities follows the admonition of Jesus Christ to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, take in the stranger, clothe the naked and visit the sick and afflicted.