Photosayas Kicks Off in Tacloban and Ormoc

On October 2013, a 7.2-magnitude struck Bohol island in the Visayas region. It was the deadliest earthquake in the Philippines in 23 years. Only three weeks after the earthquake, another natural calamity hit the country. The category-5 typhoon Haiyan, locally known as Yolanda, was the deadliest Philippine typhoon in history, leaving more than 6,000 people dead and still over 1,000 missing.

Cebu-based part-time photographer Jesslee Cuizon decided to do a photo project that will help in the rehabilitation of the lives of the survivors.. The photo project was greatly inspired by the still-ongoing project Photohoku in Japan after the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in 2011.

Photos, especially in albums, are printed memories we all treasure forever. The aim of the project is to rebuild these photo albums which were severely damaged or lost because of these calamities. Photosayas - Damaged Photos

The Photosayas team first went to Tacloban City, one of the mostly damaged places, and instantly made photo albums for 5 families. With the help of a local friend, we chose the families, explained to them what the project is all about, took photos of the entire family, printed the photos with a pocket printer, put the photos in to the magnetic albums, and finally handed the albums to the families.

The next day, the team went to Ormoc City and did photo albums for 5 families. Photosayas - Pick family, take photos, print and put photos in album, give album to family

The experience was overwhelming. The priceless reaction of the families upon seeing the new photo albums will keep Photosayas going. The team plans to visit more places affected by the earthquake and typhoon and aims to make 100 albums this year. The challenge now is how we can keep this project with limited resources.

Our friends from Photohoku are willing to give us a polariod camera and photo papers, but we don’t have the funds yet for the shipping fees. We also need photo albums besides other logistical expenses.

If you are interested and willing to help us, you can contact Jesslee through You can also like our Facebook page for more updates.

Photosayas - The first 10 families