Written By Cherry Lou Cunanan, Volunteer Writer, Operation Blessing Philippines

MANAYUPIT, MAAYON, Capiz – There was a long line of patients seeking medical assistance when the Operation Blessing Disaster Response Team finally arrived in Manayupit, Maayon in Capiz, after an hour and a half travel from Roxas City. Carrying medical supplies and relief packages, the team was on its third medical mission and relief distribution operations for the week, with the Philippine Army in tow for assistance and security support.

Some of the children from the nearby elementary school queued with their parents for a medical checkup. The community warmly welcomed the free medical services Operation Blessing brought because going to the nearest health center would cost them 150 pesos to commute.

One of the patients was Marlene Gonzales, a 28-year-old mother, who brought her baby, Mary Joy, for an examination. The baby suffered from a swelling below her right ear. There were also two lumps on her head. Mary Joy seemed to be oblivious of her swollen face and lumps, as she continued to smile, with eyes bright, to those around her.

Doctors who examined Mary Joy said that the lumps must have been a result of her exposure to rain and cold winds when the whole family tried to seek refuge during the onslaught of Typhoon Yolanda. They traveled to the next town, to her brother-in-law’s house in the next town. The mother said that Mary Joy’s body was only covered with plastic, with her head completely exposed to the harsh elements. Since that grueling journey, the baby girl started to have fever that went on for a week.

The doctor recommended four different kinds of medicines for Mary Joy’s condition. Marlene, the mother, happily received the free medicines from Operation Blessing, and she knew by then that her precious baby would recover soon.

Part of Operation Blessing’s disaster response efforts is organizing medical missions in calamity-stricken areas. You, too, can be a part of helping the survivors of Typhoon Yolanda in Capiz, and the rest of Panay.

Partner with OB now by calling or texting these numbers: (+632) 477-7806/ 0939-9215543/ 0922-8036922/ 0917-5812603. You can also like and share OB’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/obphil, or follow OB on Twitter, @obphil.