Grace Acojedo was seriously injured during the Haiyan/Yolanda disaster in Ormoc, Philippines when the roof of her house collapsed on her.

She spent the first four days in horrendous conditions that have left her in bad shape. Houssam travelled from Canada to the Philippines to find her and has helped take to a better hospital in Cebu, where she has begun the long process of recovery.

We have been documenting her journey on a Tumblr blog as well as creating an imgur album that gained the attention of r/pics that helped us get donations and articles published by BuzzFeed, Yahoo! News, Huffington Post and others (links to all articles on our blog).

We recently made a video to update everyone on Grace's situation.

Today we managed to upload a video of Houssam finding Grace at the clinic in Ormoc.

There have been some facts misreported, such as the coast guard taking Houssam and Grace to Cebu, whereas in fact they helped Houssam and Grace board a ferry that the ticket companies claimed had no remaining seats despite it being a medical emergency.

So here is a chance to ask Houssam (/u/desertman82) and me questions about what happened, where we are with things and what is to come.

You can help Grace by sharing her story or donating even $1 to help with medical expenses.

EDIT Here is some additional proof aside from my reddit history.

EDIT2: It's close to midnight in the Philippines, so Houssam is going to catch some sleep. Feel free to post any questions you have and he'll chime in when he wakes up.

Comments: 20 • Responses: 5  • Date: 

tinos1446 karma

Hey guys! I just wanted to say good luck with everything!

hollowgram3 karma

Thanks, your support is important to us!

stephaniemarshall2 karma

Would you be willing to consider setting up a bitcoin donation fund? I believe the new wealth in the bitcoin economy would be a great contributor and they have already proven to be very generous for charitable purposes.

hollowgram2 karma

The idea certainly is interesting. I did some quick googling and made a wallet (1ApnMPFjPbvJJoetkgpVza5VhgixJ1jmao).

Is the Canadian law OK on this, I saw this article about the FEC. I wonder how the Canadian government sides on this issue?

Juneauite2 karma

Have you considered if this is successful, creating more programs for others? Possibly for groups that have faced some type of disaster?

hollowgram2 karma

I'll let Houssam answer his take on this, I'm sure this journey for him will leave more people affected then just his and Grace's immediate circles.

For me, I actually tried my hand in creating an NGO in Tanzania back in 2011 (where me and Houssam were also trying to establish a company, here's a photo from those times). That was a crazy experience and another story in its own right. I had slowly begun by interviewing 20 street kids in Mwanza (and took them to eat afterward), as well as documenting a school next to where I lived in Kiseke where over 1,000 students attended with roughly 20 teachers (with only few rooms that had floors and even fewer with enough space) where they had only recently installed running water (no electricity). The plan was to get the street kids shelter and organize them to get an education and life coaching, as well as raising money and constructing facilities for the school.

Unfortunately because of the company ventures failing due to straight backstabbing and sabotage by our mutual business partner, we had to eventually pack up and leave. It was a very heavy experience that in some ways I'm still processing (as I have yet to write that up into a story to properly share). Coming back to Finland with only a backpack and suitcase took me a long time to build myself a home with work and re-inventing myself. I do intend to help people and my long-term dream is to create videos on issues for online audiences.

When this tragedy happened, I had to do what I could to help. Thankfully the internet picked up the story and helped Grace get the help she needs. The thought of my friend alone in a foreign land trying to help a woman he loves became top priority. Now that things are much better, I'm hoping I'll be able to schedule my days a bit more regularly and try to find the time to get myself to the point where I can give more of myself to those in need.

moonshyne272 karma

Houssam, for a little more background, how did you and Grace meet and how long have you been engaged? Congratulations on your wedding.

How much have you raised so far and how much to you anticipate still needing?

hollowgram6 karma


Houssam can answer the first question when he wakes up, but I'll address the donation questions.

As of now, we have raised $12,623.37 CAD in donations, which is amazing, and something we are eternally grateful for.

When I was setting up the page (which didn't end up attracting anyone to it so I removed it) at the beginning of this challenge, it asked for a donation goal. Houssam estimated $12,000 as an amount that might be sufficient. It was beyond my imagination at that point that we'd reach such a sum, but here we are.

I'm not sure how many operations Grace will need, but each costs at least $1,000 as far as I recall. On top of the operations, Houssam tells me that the doctors fee is only billed once the patient is ready to be discharged, with doctor fees being also around $1,000 minimum.

Hopefully Houssam will be able to give a better breakdown of what's ahead in regards to costs. We have discussed that any money left after Grace is in health will be donated to Doctors Without Borders, the only organization Houssam has seen active in the disaster areas.

jordaninabox0 karma


hollowgram1 karma

Uh, ok.

For me, I love to have lunch with colleagues on Friday's at Morrison's when they offer pepper steak. I eat mine with potato wedgies and hot sauce.