For the people surrounding Taal Lake that were directly affected by the eruption of Taal Volcano last January 12 , Covid 19 brought in a new type of disruption to their lives.
In the town of San Nicolas, many of them were only permitted to return in the middle of February, a month after the eruption. The next weeks they spent cleaning their houses, trying their best to get rid of the heaps of ash that worked its way into the nooks and crannies of their homes. They were oblivious of the unseen danger that was slowly spreading around the world because their main concern was getting their lives back to normal.
On March 12, exactly 2 months after Taal Volcano erupted, the President of the Philippines made an announcement that would put Metro Manila in Community Quarantine from March 15-April 15 to prevent the spread of Corona Virus. Shortly after, the provincial governors followed suit.
If you weren’t a frontliner, life seemed to come at a standstill.
For a people still fresh from trauma of the eruption, this quarantine meant something else.
“Covid is worse than the Taal Eruption, because during the eruption, we were still able to escape. But because of Covid, if the volcano erupts again, we couldn’t go anywhere.” shared 54-year old Wilfreda Rizano from San Nicolas, Batangas.
“But I am happy that our local government is taking good care of us. They have provided us with food and other essentials because many of us can’t go out and work.” Wildreda continued.
ADRA distributed 25kg of rice to 327 families in San Nicolas last May 13, 2020. ADRA also gave cash assistance in the towns of San Nicolas, Taal, Agoncillo, and Laurel in February for the Taal Volcano Eruption Emergency Response.