Taal Volcano, an active volcano in the province of Batangas around 60 kilometres south of Manila, released a phreatic explosion on 12 January, Sunday. This prompted the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS) to raise Alert Level 2 (Increasing Unrest) for Taal Volcano at 2:30 pm, which quickly went to Alert Level 4 (Hazardous Eruption Imminent) at 7:30 pm. Mandatory evacuation, flights cancelled, and other disaster risk reduction measures were set in motion to ensure public safety and security.
La Salle schools all over the country quickly responded by calling for donations and organising relief operations. The La Salle school in the province, De La Salle Lipa (DLSL), acted as the central coordinator. With the leadership of Br. Dante Amisola FSC, DLSL President, the school adopted Sto Toribio Elementary School, a public school that turned into an evacuation center. DLSL committed to provide 3 full meals for the evacuees, as well as come up with uplifting activities, such as games, zumba, story telling, and prayer services.
On 18 January, DLSL welcomed 80 families to stay inside the campus, not as evacuees, but considered as guests. Called the ‘Welcome Shelters’, the facility provides individual tents per family, shower amenities, entertainment area, play center, and more. When the guests arrive, they undergo medical check-up and a 4- step registration process.
Click on the link to read more about the ‘Welcome Shelters’: Lipa school aims to provide sense of normalcy, dignity to Taal evacuees by Ms. Tina Ganzon-Ozaeta
PARC General Councilor, Br. Ricky Laguda FSC, and LEAD Brother Visitor, Br. Armin Luistro FSC, visited a lady at the Welcome Shelters who needs to undergo surgery.
(Photos: Br. Dante Amisola FSC, Ms. Diane Pardo-Aguilar, Mrs. ES Medialdea, Mr. Dennis Roxas Dimaala, Ms. Ana Ria Aguilar, Mr. Zak Castil)
Photo from newsinfo.inquirer.net
“While the school academic administrators will be making official announcements regarding these matters, I would like to personally take this opportunity to appeal, in these very trying times, to our dear parents, students, faculty, and personnel to bear with understanding the very dire situation many of our 'kababayans' are currently experiencing and to seize this crisis and convert it into a valuable "teaching-moment" for ourselves and our children---about what is really most important in life, particularly now; what it means to be Filipino; and, what it means to be a human being, especially in the face of extreme adversity and untold suffering.
The next few days and weeks are opportunities for us as individuals, and with our families, to show our humanity and what it is that makes us truly human, made in God's own image and likeness----our Compassion, our Mercy, our Kindness. It is no longer enough to just feel pity but do nothing. Each act of kindness to others in most need leads us to our own salvation. And like the best of the Filipinos-of-old, practicing "bayanihan" is not old fashioned, but rather cool.” - Br. Dante Amisola FSC (DLSL President)
Volcanic eruptions are unpredictable and there is no assurance when this calamity will end. In line with this, we are calling on the Lasallian Family of LEAD and beyond to help in the relief operations. For donations, kindly check the details below: