Disaster Reflection

1223 Words5 Pages
The journey to arrive at the disaster relief site proved to be long and arduous, but the amazing sight of collaboration and hope quickly dissipated all complaints. The passage was far from smooth - a turbulent flight from Los Angeles to Manila to Cebu, a cramped ferry across the island of Leyte, and a detoured drive from the port in Ormoc. An exhausting two days of travel brought my team to Tacloban City, the epicenter of Super Typhoon Haiyan and the city with the highest death toll inflicted by the catastrophe. For two weeks, I witnessed the inspiring efforts of global agencies and organizations working together to rebuild and rehabilitate the affected communities. Each volunteer played a critical role, operating in seamless and selfless coordination. During the day, my team helped reconstruct church buildings and youth centers, but most rewarding were the nightly gatherings with youth groups. We listened to each one recount their stories, inclining our ears and heart to them as they voiced their fears and struggles. Unspeakably, I learned the immense value of dialogue in the healing process - the importance of storytelling and listening. Beyond the outward chaos, a testimony of resiliency radiated from these young kids as they fearlessly tackle life’s storms. Such an experience implanted within me the desire to combat a pressing global health challenge and the value of the collective impact of the community, launching my serious interest in public health. With limited
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