Finding Peace Amid the Devastation

Finding Peace Amid the Devastation
Praise God, everyone is alive. Everything else will be okay.

It was a scary day for Sports Physical Therapy employee Adela Schauwecker as she heard the news of a massive earthquake in her mother’s hometown of Sevilla, Bohol, Philippines, on Oct. 15. She prayed and waited anxiously to hear if her aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews were safe. The news arrived a day later – all were alive, but their home was destroyed.

Then, just one month later on Nov. 16, Adela was praying again as she heard the news of the strongest typhoon in the world, Typhoon Haiyan, hitting her family’s nearby neighborhood, Tacloban. She has cousins who live there, and the news coverage indicated the destruction was massive. A few days later, Adela’s prayers were once again answered: Her cousins were alive, but homeless and living in a municipal shelter. The Filipinos are a blessed, content people of faith, people who give thanks for the sun coming every time a typhoon hits their land (about four or five times per year). Adela says, “Praise God, everyone is alive. Everything else will be okay.”

When Adela shared her stories with her colleagues at Sports PT, her work family kicked into gear! Working together, the American Red Cross and the Philippines Red Cross have identified the biggest need as money – money to get supplies such as water, food and shelter to the impacted families, and money to help the families and communities rebuild.

Sports PT, which has several employees with family members in the Philippines, announced a month-long fundraising effort across our 21 locations in New York State. To date, grassroots efforts such as buying the chance to wear “Jeans for the Philippines,” bottle-and-can drives, $2 Tuesday lunches, bake sales, and collection jars in our clinics have raised nearly $1,000 in just a few short weeks.

“Our family is committed to helping their families recover and rebuild,” says Lynn Steenberg, President of Sports PT. “Working with the Red Cross, we will help as much as we can so our staff can find peace amongst this devastation.”

To add your support, visit a nearby Sports PT clinic.

Dorothy Hall is a current member of the American Red Cross of Central New York Board of Directors and the former board chair.