Maid sends all she has to help affected family

Filipina Elvie Madahan is down to her last $50, but the maid is sending all she has to her family members who are affected by Super Typhoon Haiyan.

Her younger brother's home in Capiz province, an hour by plane from Ground Zero Tacloban, has been razed to the ground.

"I told my brother, don't worry. I will work to send money to him to rebuild the house. It is more important that they are safe," said Ms Madahan, 32, who is single and has been working here for eight years.

She was at money transfer company Western Union's branch at Lucky Plaza in Orchard Road on Tuesday, where there was a line of Filipinos rushing to remit money for family members to rebuild homes and to buy food and clothes.

The Filipino community here has also taken to Facebook to organise donation drives and charity events such as concerts and carnivals. Some banks and remittance companies with offices in Singapore, such as Philippine National Bank and Pinoy Express, have waived transfer fees for donations to some charitable organisations.

Mrs Luz Campos Mesenas, the publisher of Filipino magazine Pinoy Star, has organised a drive for the public to donate food and clothes. Cargo company Afreight will sponsor the cost of flying the items to Manila.

"I posted on Facebook on Monday night about the drive and the next morning, the donations started coming in," she said. Filipino professional singer Amy Bondi, who impersonates American diva Tina Turner, will hold a three-hour performance for about 100 people in two weeks.

"I hope to raise about $5,000. I just want to do all I can to help my fellow Filipinos," she said.

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