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Local Filipino community reacts to typhoon

The Catholic Voice
Rev. Geoffrey Baraan, St. Anne's Catholic Church, Union City

The deadly Typhoon Haiyan that hit the Philippines six days ago has claimed at least 2 thousand lives, with hundreds of thousands of survivors left with no shelter.
Thousands of miles away, here in the Bay Area, more than 400 thousand Filipinos are watching what's happening, and mobilizing to respond. Many are concentrated in places like Daly City and Union City.

In Union City, St. Anne's Catholic Church has a congregation of 5000, and Pastor Geoffrey Baraan is noticing an increase in the number of people at mass since the typhoon. "There's sadness and frustration, and anger at how slow the government response has been," he says.

Parishioners Marlene Balingit, Ramona Dizom, and Linda Canuto express their shock and grief, but also explain how the community is coming together in prayer and in raising funds and sending donations back home to the typhoon-ravaged areas. "Prayer and action," says Canuto.

St. Anne's Catholic Church is holding a benefit concert Friday November 15th at 7:30pm.

Address: 32223 Cabello St, Union City. Tickets are $20

Filipino business owners are also taking action. Alex Crispino, manager of supermarket Seafood City on Dyer St. in Union City says his store's remittance service is seeing an increase in dollars being transferred to the Philippines, and the remittance company is waiving the fee to send money. He also has instructed his cashiers to ask every customer if they would like to make a donation at the cash register.

The Atlas shipping company in the supermarket is offering to send donation boxes full of clothing and blankets to the Philippines free of charge.

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Hana Baba is host of Crosscurrents, KALW's weeknight newsmagazine that broadcasts on KALW Public Radio in the San Francisco Bay Area.