Typhoon Haiyan

Typhoon Haiyan

Indonesian domestic helpers raise funds to help victims of typhoon

PUBLISHED : Monday, 18 November, 2013, 6:36am
UPDATED : Monday, 18 November, 2013, 11:23am

When Indonesian domestic helper Ennie saw images of the destruction wrought by Super Typhoon Haiyan as it battered the Philippines, the collapsed houses and bridges reminded her of the 2004 tsunami.

"That was why I really felt for the Filipinos," Ennie said outside Sogo department store in Causeway Bay yesterday.

She was one of 10 members of the Association of Indonesian Migrant Workers in Hong Kong who launched a fund-raising campaign. 

Ennie said that no matter where the domestic helpers came from, it was important they united to help the Philippines in its hour of need.

"We need to help each other. The Filipinos helped us in 2004, and now it is time for us to help them back," she said. "They are having a tough time and I hope they can cheer up soon. We will help cheer them up."

In 2004, a 9.1-magnitude earthquake triggered a tsunami up to 30 metres high that killed some 226,000 people in 13 Indian Ocean nations. The official death toll from Haiyan so far is 3,974, with 1,186 missing.

Another Indonesian domestic helper, Alin Deni, was also distraught at the suffering caused by the typhoon.

"The families of some Filipino friends have died. I have tried to comfort them but they are still going through a tough time," she said.

Filipino domestic helper Jonah Simundo, whose house in Iloilo collapsed, appreciated the help. "My Indonesian friends have asked me how I am going and I really appreciate their support," she said.

The Filipino community in Hong Kong has organised various efforts to raise money and send clothes and food. 

Eman Villanueva, spokesman of the Operation Migrants' Rescue Compatriots, which represents 70 Filipino groups in Hong Kong, said they had raised HK$90,000 so far.

Video: Aid effort intensifies in Philippines