Finsa CharityThe appeal has been launched in sympathy with all the Filipino employees and customers in the U.A.E. where Finsa have been selling building materials for over 20 years.

It’s been two weeks since typhoon Haiyan devastated the Philippines with 200 mph strong winds and 45 ft tall waves landing ashore.

Latest official figures suggest 5,000 have lost their lives while hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced from their homes.

It’s estimated that more than 200,000 houses have been totally destroyed.

In the great Finsa family, this news invites us to think about our Filipino colleagues.

Finsa Middle East has traditionally employed members of the large Filipino community in Dubai. And its customer base is full of members of the Filipino community in the Gulf.
Some 700,000 Filipinos live these days in the U.A.E, most of them in Dubai.

We invited Erland Josef from the Sales team in our Dubai office to kindly share with us his experiences through these tragic moments lived in the Philippines.

“Some of my friends and friends of my family that I know were directly affected by the typhoon,” said Erland.

“Some lost their love ones and properties. Everyone is sending their help and so thankful for it. But the situation is still not getting to improve.

“After more than a week, people are still missing and you will still see a lot of bodies laying on the streets and in the water. Very sad and I cannot imagine how far they can survive on this. Some people/children are dying because of lack of medical support, water and food.”

Erland’s family luckily survived to typhoon Haiyan. But this experience tragically will stay in their memory for a long time.

“My family was safe back home. They’re not so affected by typhoon Haiyan, although my place/house was flooded (water level until waist line).

“In October 2011 we were hit by strong typhoon Ondoy as well and house was fully covered by water (up to rooftop).

“After that aftermath house was not strong as before, so every time we have this calamity they are always aware to evacuate and go to safer place which they did this time. The most important thing is they are safe and no one hurt. They are emotionally and mentally stressed because of the situation.”

The large expatriate Filipino community in the U.A.E. is mobilized raising funds to support the victims. “I understand and sympathize with the desperate needs of the victims. Every little bit counts.

“The smallest food or water package can make the difference between life and death. I think every Filipino here in UAE knows that.

“And that is why I’m very happy with the national display of compassion and civic duty. Everyone, even the poorest is donating food and money.”

“We volunteer our time. All the local and private corporations are also helping in their own ways.

Catholic community in Dubai like Singles for Christ (SFC) where I’m a member is very busy collecting donations and working with relief goods to send back home in Philippines and many organisations in church are doing their best to help as well.

“To see people helping and working together everywhere is enough for me. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

How you can make a difference…

For those interested in sending some humanitarian help for those affected by typhoon Haiyan, Finsa has set up a fund raising campaign to raise funds for the United Nations World Food Programme.

They’ve been one of the humanitarian organizations more active in the region from day one.

Send your donation at