A Story of Resilience and Gratitude
Mister Gadgeteer is an eCommerce Store founded by me, a typhoon Haiyan survivor from the island of Leyte serving as a community doctor in far-flung communities in the Philippines.
During the typhoon, my family faced the hardest battering of howling winds in our entire life. It lasted for around 3 long hours, and the first image that I saw right after the typhoon was that of a man carrying his dead child. Minutes later, I found myself suturing wounds of men, women, and children who had survived after being carried for hours by the storm surge. My house became a little clinic both for the ordinary person and the rescuers.
After the ordeal, I came to realize that money has no value because I couldn’t buy anything during a disaster. A good relationship with the people, the showing of kindness and empathy, do matter a lot during a disaster. People would share goodies and canned food with us. Usually, they obtained them from those littered on the streets and some from trucks that were thrown into the sea. I could not forget myself bartering goodies with other people.
During that typhoon in 2013, my youngest child was barely a year old and he would ask for milk. But there was no milk. There was no clean water to drink, we drank pineapple juice from cans. We can drink only boiled water, but reserved it for the kids. My father instinct worked. I immediately rode my bicycle to search for milk for my little one. I was so desperate that I went around the ruined city, unmindful of the heat, because not a single tree was standing. Until I bumped with a man bringing some cans of milk. I asked if I could buy even just a can of milk for my little boy who’s crying for milk. And he did grant my request.
This photo was taken by me when I flew kites with my kids weeks later near a totally devastated area. While my kids were flying kites, thoughts of the ordeal ran through my mind, of kids begging for food from their mothers, for milk, for warmth during a cold night. It was during this time that Mister Gadgeteer was conceptualized, “to let other people know that some families need them”. Since then, Mister Gadgeteer has been providing essential goods to many families, like vegetables, milk, rice, clothing, bedsheets, tooth brush, toothpastes, etc. You can help them too with the goods that you buy from us. “I want you to get involved”.
In this picture, you can see members of my household helping one another pack assorted vegetables for distribution to families. At Mister Gadgeteer, we always aim to provide our customers top-quality products carefully selected for their ultimate satisfaction. From the profit that we get, we aim to utilize part of it in providing meaningful assistance to victims of natural disasters, especially the vulnerable population like children, the pregnant mothers and the elderly.