Jono Finlow, in typhoon hit Philippines

A Reaseheath College lecturer is working in the Philippines with an emergency team to help communities devastated by a typhoon.

Jonathan ‘Jono’ Finlow and fellow members of DART International UK (Disaster Arborist Response Team) are part of a global relief effort in Northern Samar.

The area was hit by Typhoon Melor in December before going on to strike several other islands across the Central Philippines.

The country declared a ‘state of national calamity’.

More than 750,000 people were safely evacuated, but 41 people died and many more are missing or injured.

Tens of thousands of homes and public properties were destroyed and more than 280,000 people are sheltering in evacuation centres.

Mayor of San Jose, a coastal town in Northern Samar, made a formal request for help.

So a DART team of Jono, team leader Gary Bailey, team medic James Enticknap-Green and Graham Beer left for the Philippines on New Year’s Eve.

They are spending two weeks on the stricken island clearing typhoon debris to allow safe access for other relief teams and treating damaged and high risk trees.

They are also training local volunteers in chainsaw handling and tree clearance and may donate machinery and safety equipment to those they have trained.

Jono, who assesses apprentices and teaches Forestry and Arboriculture at the Nantwich college, also runs The Good Tree Company and is a DART trustee.

His disaster relief work is supported by students and staff, who raise funds for the charity.

For the latest effort, Reaseheath trained arborist Twm-Tegid Brunton, a member of the North West Welsh Opera Choir, sang Christmas carols from the top of a 100ft high redwood tree on campus.

Twm is well on his way to raising £1,000 for DART. You can still donate at

For further details about DART see

Jono Finlow teaching, flies to typhoon stricken Philippines

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