Typhoon Odette Housing Project in Bayagnan Island, Surigao City

In December 2021, the country was again struck by a super typhoon that left many of our countrymen devastated and homeless. One of the most affected areas was Surigao Province, particularly the island communities of Surigao City. Since communication and electricity were down, it took us days to learn about the situation on Bayagnan Island, where we do our mission and apostolate. But despite the tough situation after the typhoon, the MSC, through the efforts of Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage Parish and other MSC mission partners, was still able to conduct numerous relief operations in the affected communities in Surigao. 

After the relief operations, the MSC Philippine Province decided to have the first batch of housing projects in Surigao, particularly on Bayagnan Island. Right away, the district conducted an assessment and mapping of the island community. With the help of the MSC Mission Office, we were able to identify the most affected households in five different communities of Bayagnan Island, namely Sitio Buyho, San Jose, Brgy. Cagutsan, Sitio Lubjac, Brgy. Catugupan, and Brgy. Majagao. A total of 129 totally damaged and 205 partially damaged households were assessed and needed assistance for the housing project. 

On March 23, 2022, the MSC Typhoon Odette Housing Project started. And with the help of our community leaders, who dedicated their time and effort, the implementation of the project was right on schedule. And finally, two months after the construction began, on May 25, 2022, the 129 newly constructed houses were blessed by Msgr. Edito Alcala, DCS, together with the MSC Surigao District fathers. The families are so grateful for the help and support that the MSC fathers have given them. They promised that they would take good care of their new home, and they also hope and pray that God will continuously bless us so that we can be able to bless others. 

The housing project was indeed a great blessing, not only for the beneficiaries but also for us. As we go along the process, we have come to realize that this project is not only a housing project, but somehow it builds a foundation for realizing the true essence of a community, which is to help one another achieve a common goal for everyone. The beneficiaries helped one another to build their respective houses and lived the spirit of community, which is what we called the bayanihan spirit. And that is, I think, the best part of doing this project. 

On behalf of the MSC Philippine Province, MSC fathers, and all the beneficiaries, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to all the donors, benefactors, friends, and mission partners who shared their resources and supported this endeavor. Your help has given hope to our brothers and sisters in our mission areas on Bayagnan Island. We also thank all the MSCs and the Mission Office for supporting this project all the way until its completion. And to all volunteers and supporters who have made great contributions to the success of this project, SALAMAT KARAJAW. God bless us all.