Tech firms pitch in to help Philippines recover post-typhoon

Some of the biggest tech firms have answered the call for help, either by raising cash or donating technology services and items, as country recovers from Typhoon Haiyan
Written by Joel D. Pinaroc, Contributor

Information technology (IT) firms based in the Philippines and abroad have pitched in as recovery efforts in the typhoon-hit areas in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan (known locally as "Yolanda").

It has been weeks since the super typhoon ravaged Leyte province resulting to thousands of lives lost and billions in property damaged. Help continues to pour in as efforts now switch from rescue and relief to recovery and rehabilitation.

Many donated in kind, with local telcos initiating free services in some areas while re-establishing their respective communication links.

Singapore firms Sparkline and Optimizely provided complimentary use of their A/B testing for websites. It claims this can help fund-raising sites be more effective and ultimately collect more donations.

Germany's SAP has offered its mobile solutions for free by tying up with the local carriers. The software giant provides key solutions that the local telcos use for SMS and international calls.

Computer maker Dell donated cash and equipment including laptops for cause-oriented groups (such as the Red Cross) to aid in the recovery operations.

Help also came in the form of cash.

Consumer electronics giant LG Electronics reportedly pledged half a million dollars (or more than 21 million pesos) to the Philippine Red Cross and committed to install solar panels for to provide temporary electricity in key areas.

Japanese technology giant Epson also raised millions of pesos in cash donations for a non-government organization or NGO.

Schneider Electric from France pledged cash donations to be used for Leyte's rebuilding program and emergency assistance (in the form of food packs) for the thousands of families displaced by the typhoon.

The assistance coming from the IT sector is indeed very noteworthy and here's hoping that more help will come in as the country, particularly Leyte province, continues its long road to recovery.

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