The Embassy, in coordination with the Philippine Honorary Consulate General in Brisbane and Filipino community leaders in Queensland, continues to closely monitor the situation of Filipinos in flood-affected areas of Queensland, to exert all efforts to ascertain their situation and to provide possible assistance.
It has instructed the Philippine Honorary Consul General in Brisbane, Mr. Allan Grummit, to provide regular updates and to visit the evacuation centres as soon as practicable to determine the condition of Filipinos who may have sought temporary shelter there and the assistance that can be extended to them.
The Embassy has also embarked on a telephone brigade of Filipino community leaders and 457-visa holders registered with the Embassy to check on the situation of Filipino communities and families in the affected areas.
The Embassy expects next-of-kin in the Philippines who wish to get in touch with their relatives in affected areas to have a difficult time in doing so due to cut power and communication lines. Those in the Philippines may therefore contact the Embassy which, in turn, will try its best to reach the former’s relatives in Queensland. The Embassy may be contacted through telephone numbers +61-2-62732535, +61-2-62732536 and +61-2-62735718, Fax No. +61-2-62733984 or email address firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chargé d’Affaires Mary Anne A. Padua has likewise appealed to Filipino organizations in Australia to extend whatever assistance they can to their kababayans in Queensland.
Those who wish to make monetary donations may send them to the Commonwealth Bank of Australia Cheque Account of the Filipino-Australian Foundation of Qld Inc. (BSB No: 064 105, Account No: 1005 9338) or contact Mr. Mauro Somodio, Founding President of the Filipino- Australian Foundation of Queensland Inc. at PO Box 206, Coopers Plains, Queensland 4108, Australia, website www.fafq.org.au, Tel. No. (61-7) 32725963 or Mobile No. 0404 663 978.
On the other hand, those who wish to make donations in kind, i.e., clothes, canned goods, blankets, etc., may get in touch Mr. Jack Navarro of Navarro Enterprises Pty Ltd, with address at River Road, Redbank, Queensland and Tel No. +61402 818 909, Fax No. (617) 3807 7379, Mobile No. 0402 818 909 or email email@example.com.
Rivers overflowed and spawned flash floods in Queensland after more than two weeks of heavy rain, affecting more than 200,000 people and leaving 15 people dead and more than 70 people missing. [It may be noted that the figures on those who perished and those reportedly missing have been fluctuating due to the precarious situation on the ground.]
The Embassy has received reports that 10,000 Filipinos were affected by the flood crisis in Queensland, however the actual number cannot be confirmed at this time as inundated areas are totally inaccessible by land and power and communication lines are down.
According to the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship, there are an estimated 18,000 Filipinos in Queensland.