Foliage crowns the once-bare trees that survived the wrath of the strongest typhoon to have hit the Philippines, as if nothing had happened nearly four years ago. Strong and resilient as these trees, the people of Tuburan and Medellin in Cebu are already back on their feet going about their day, smiling, selling their goods, and catering to tourists.


Vendors have now ease in doing business after the Tuburan Public Market was rehabilitated through concerted efforts of various organizations.


The town of Tuburan’s public market is as lively as ever, with vendors announcing and showcasing their wares to the residents doing their daily trip to the market. Local government units, regional agencies, military, and various organizations such as the Rotary Clubs of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Nihonbashi West, Japan and Cebu; and VICSAL Foundation are back to their regular operations, even livelier than before.

Similarly, the town of Medellin, one of the province’s fastest growing tourist destinations, is teeming with foreign and domestic visitors enjoying the town’s three main vibrant and exhilarating attractions: Funtastic Island, Hide Away, and Zip Away. According to the Department of Tourism (DOT 7), 1,076 tourists visited Medellin within the first two months of this year.

Repaired boardwalk in Hide Away Beach Resort in Barangay Tindog, Medellin, Cebu.

More importantly, there is no trace of the typhoon’s aftermath. A person couldn’t tell that nearly four years ago, the rooves of the market, canopies, and cottages were blown away, the attractions were all torn down, leaving the two towns in shambles and people with little to make ends meet. These are all results of community-driven rebuilding to restore the smiles of the locals and tourists, as they share the beauty, warmth, and happiness that make the Philippines unique.