This case study, led by Philip Kelly and Melissa Gibson, investigates the transnational spaces and social relationships created through a disaster event, and the ways in which Filipino-Canadian youth identity is forged and transformed via the encounter with lived realities in the Philippines and in the context of climate change.
In November 2013, Typhoon Haiyan, local name Yolanda, made landfall in the Philippines, killing thousands of people and causing massive devastation to houses, infrastructure and livelihoods across the archipelago. It was a watershed moment, not only for the Philippines’ disaster management response, but for many watching around the world.
In the days and weeks after the storm, the Filipino diaspora in Canada, and its allies in churches and community groups around the country, began to gather funds and supplies to help support Typhoon Haiyan relief efforts. Canada and Canadians were major donors to the Philippines following the typhoon, giving $170 million CAD according to official sources. Half of this money was donated by individual Canadians through fundraising efforts. The other half was a ‘match’ donation by the government of Canada to Canadian-based organizations working in disaster response.
How does engagement with transnational disaster response foster the formation of new subject positions for Filipino-Canadian youth, and how might they articulate these positions among family, friends and communities in Canada? How might the process of philanthropic engagement with ‘distant strangers’ change alongside personal identification and social solidarity?