Proper sanitation is significant in warding off diseases. The COVID-19 pandemic is driving this point home stronger than ever, as handwashing is considered one of the best measures we have in preventing the spread of the disease.

Yet today, so many people lack safe sanitation. For the evacuees of the Taal volcanic eruption in Laurel, Batangas, this also remains a great challenge as they lack adequate access to handwashing facilities in the evacuation sites.

“One of the problems we face here is our access to water, as we are only being supplied for a limited time. We cannot even save as much water as we can because what we have our few recyclable bottles only,” shares Lyn Mendoza, an evacuee from Brgy, Bugaan East, Laurel, Batangas.

Aside from the intermittent water supply that has become the norm to the families in the site, the social distancing measures also became hard for them to practice because they have to share one room with five more families from the same barangay.

“By the grace of God, none of us in this room became sick or showed any symptoms of COVID-19. But as a mother to four children, of course, I am not fully complacent knowing that we are vulnerable because of lack of access to clean and safe water.”

To help send relief, our disaster response team braved the storm to visit several evacuation sites in Laurel, Batangas and distribute water containers and kitchen utensils to hundreds of families who were forced to evacuate after Alert Level 3 was raised due to Taal’s volcanic activity.

Aside from the distributed supplies, we also partnered with the local government of Laurel, Batangas to install a new water purifying station in Ticub Elementary School to help the evacuees access clean and safe drinking water.

“I am excited to use this jerry can! Thank you so much, Operation Blessing, for solving one of our problems here at the site.”

Access to safe water would mean better hygiene and good health for disaster-stricken communities. Would you be a ray of hope for our desperate kababayans? Donate now at For inquiries, please contact 09399215543 or 09189067753. #Happy25YearsOB #MissionYouCanBelieveIn

DSWD-SB-SP-00035-2021-Nationwide. Valid until October 17, 2021.