COLLECTIONS at Dudley’s Catholic churches have raised a whopping £3,616 for victims of Typhoon Haiyan which devastated communities in the Philippines.

The fundraising took place in response to an urgent appeal by the international charity CAFOD.

CAFOD, the overseas development and relief agency of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, is working with its American sister agency, Catholic Relief Services, to provide water and improve sanitation in disaster-hit regions.

Helen Moseley, CAFOD manager for Dudley, said: “The generosity of the local people has been overwhelming and this is an exceptional response to CAFOD’s appeal.

“People’s livelihoods and communities have been devastated in the Philippines, and the churches there are playing a vital part in providing emergency relief and starting the rebuilding process. It’s extremely heartwarming to know local people want to help.”

Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines on November 8 and has affected over 13 million people by smashing power, transport and water systems as well as destroying thousands of homes.

Shadow Secretary of State for International Development, Jim Murphy MP, has just returned from a visit to the worst-affected islands.

He said: “My message to CAFOD supporters is that your money will make a difference. It’s clear now, even three weeks into this operation that this will take months if not years.

“We need to ensure that our commitment to this area outlasts the shock that we all felt. A small amount of money can make a massive difference.”