Typhoon Haiyan, which devastated Central Philippines on November 8th, 2013, has affected a total of 9.5 million people across the Philippines. In its aftermath, many are feared dead and thousands of families are left homeless.
According to U.N estimates, about 2.5 million people are in need of aid with almost 600,000 people homeless in Tacloban City who are also in need of temporary housing either in staging areas like Cebu City.
To help the thousands who are affected with temporary shelter, especially those rendered homeless by the natural disaster, peer to peer home rental site Airbnb and travelmob has generously chipped in.
Airbnb allows hosts to offer their space for free and connect with those in need. All service fees are waived for those affected by the disaster and checking in between Nov 08, 2013 and Nov 29, 2013. As of the time of the writing, there are four property listings available for free:
The similar goes for travelmob, a Singapore based company which was acquired by HomeAway. While travelmob do not provide free accommodation listings, From now until Nov 30, travelmob service fee for all bookings to Philippines will go to the Typhoon Haiyan Relief Fund which they will donate to the Philippine Red Cross. The company also has the support from travelmob hosts, whom will donate a portion or the full booking revenue to the Typhoon Haiyan Relief Fund.
Unfamiliar with Airbnb or travelmob? Both of them are social stay marketplace for vacation rental accommodation. Hosts which owns property, can list them onto the online marketplace, and guests who are looking for a place to stay other than hotels, can book these spaces from hosts.
Currently Airbnb has 350,000 hosts who use its service to post their personal properties as rentals, and the services is available in more than 34,000 cities worldwide. travelmob, on the other hand, features over 14,000 Asia Pacific rental listings, including luxury villas, urban apartments and houseboats.
So if you know anyone travelling to the Philippines or if anyone needs any accommodation, Airbnb or travelmob might be a good platform for them to check out to support the disaster relief efforts indirectly.
Other than Airbnb and travelmob which provides their support through their accommodation listings, global organizations such as the American Red Cross, Apple, Google, Salvation Army, UNICEF and many more are deploying urgent relief efforts on the islands.