Stranded Typhoon Victims Get Water, Supplies

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BULCAN, Philippines - More than 2 million people in the Philippines are suffering the brunt of powerful typhoons.  At least 56 people have died.

The storms brought heavy flooding to agricultural regions of central and northern Philippines. Tens of thousands are still affected by flooding and power outages.

Most residents are staying in their flooded houses, rather than sticking it out in crammed evacuation centers.

CBN's Operation Blessing is bringing relief to those desperate victims.

Provinces like Bulacan -- just two hours drive away from Manila -- have been deep in water for almost a week.

The towns there are still submerged in water and most of the residents are going out to buy food and much needed water since relief has not reached them.

Canoes, bamboo beds, and other improvised flotation devices are used to transport people and supplies to stranded relatives.

"We don't have rice anymore. That's why we had to go out and buy food because help has not come to our place," Bulacan resident Celia Belisario said. "There are many people in our village who really need help."

A rubber boat brought by CBN's Operation Blessing is a great help to officials carrying out relief and rescue efforts.

Rice fields now submerged in 15 feet of water are used like roads to rescue those who are stranded.

Operation Blessing found the Escudero family after volunteer Bimboy Soque received a text message asking for help.

"I was growing desperate and getting nervous because what if the water will rise," Lydia Escudero said. "And we were running out of drinking water."

"My brother was texting us to evacuate, but there was just no way to do it," Joel Escudero recalled. "It was him who sent the text message. We were really praying for God to help us."

Soque is happy his family could be saved, as well as others.

"God guided us and we found her, but it was pitch dark and the waves were already strong, so we promised to come back today," he said.

"Praise God because we were also able to rescue seven other people last night and reunited them with worried family members," he said.

"It is really a miracle that you found us. All our drinking water containers were already empty. And there was no way that we can go out from here to get our supplies," Joel said.

"CBN is really a big help to us because aside from our physical needs, your coming here gave us hope and lifted our spirits," he said.

Other residents also rejoiced over the food and water delivered by Operation Blessing and local Christian volunteers.

For them, just the fact that people care enough to come and help them makes a huge difference.

Operation Blessing is also giving medical care to victims in other province. Staff and volunteers will continue to provide relief and assistance in the days ahead.

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Lucille Talusan

Lucille Talusan

CBN News Asia Correspondent

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