POC sends financial aid to athletes affected by Odette

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Dec 20 2021 06:42 PM

A general view of Siargao Island in Surigao del Norte on Friday shows the damage left by Typhoon Odette after it made landfall over the island. Handout, Philippine Coast Guard via Reuters
A general view of Siargao Island in Surigao del Norte on Friday shows the damage left by Typhoon Odette after it made landfall over the island. Handout, Philippine Coast Guard via Reuters

MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) on Monday sent financial assistance to 10 surfers and their two coaches in Siargao, as well as Olympic marathoner Mary Joy Tabal in Cebu.

All were affected by Typhoon Odette, which smashed into Visayas and parts of Mindanao late last week.

The POC forwarded financial aid worth P10,000 each to the athletes and coaches, many of whom have yet to be heard from as communications lines remained down as of Monday.

Tabal is a native of Cebu City, one of the areas hit hardest by the typhoon.

Ten surfers and two coaches, both of whom are members of the national team, also experienced the same fate as Tabal, according to United Philippine Surfing Association president Dr. Jose Raul Canlas.

The Siargao-based national surfers, Canlas said, are John Matthew Carby (with wife and two kids), Manuel Melindo Jr (with wife and two kids), John Mark Tokong (wife and with one kid) and Nilbie Blancada (with one baby), as well as Jevy Mae Agudo, Philmar Alipayo, Edito Alcala Jr., Eduardo Alciso, Kaikai Alcala (grassroots) and Noah Arkfeld (grassroots) and their respective families.

According to the POC and Canlas, only Carby was able to communicate with them.

"We hope to get in touch with the others the soonest possible time so we can further our assistance to them," said POC president Rep. Abraham "Bambol" Tolentino.

"We're hoping and praying that no other athletes or coaches have been severely affected by the typhoon."

The Philippine National Police reported on Monday that 208 persons have died in the aftermath of the typhoon.

According to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, Typhoon Odette displaced 442,424 people, with 2,435 staying in evacuation centers.