Philippines Salvation Army assists those fleeing fighting
People are leaving Marawi City, seeking refuge in Iligan City.
The Salvation Army in the Philippines is providing support to people forced from their homes by the Islamic terrorist groups known as Maute and Abu Sayyaf. A priest and several churchgoers have been taken hostage by fighters in Marawi City, on the Philippine island of Mindanao, and thousands of residents have fled.
The Maute group attacked the city on May 23, and the battle is ongoing as of May 26. CNN reports that the militants have about 500 men. They are using snipers and explosive devices in their attempted takeover in Southern Philippines. Philippine President Duterte has declared martial law on Mindanao.
Many are seeking refuge in Iligan City, where members of the local Salvation Army corps are providing assistance. The City Social Welfare Department (CSWD) has supplied some basics and found temporary accommodation for the displaced people but it is asking for other agencies and charities to help with longer-term care.
Working in partnership with the CSWD, The Salvation Army is putting together packs of essentials (water, rice, coffee, sugar, milk, sleeping mats and blankets) for 300 families—around 2,000 people. Volunteers will distribute the packs. Funds for this project have already been supplied through The Salvation Army’s International Headquarters.
The situation remains volatile as government troops attempt to deal with the uprising. The Salvation Army requests prayer for the many people who have been caught up in the fighting, and for the continuing practical and spiritual comfort being offered by The Salvation Army and other groups.
Report by IHQ Communications
Donations to the South Pacific and East Asia Disaster Fund can be made online.