A British woman has launched a fundraising appeal to bring her brain damaged and destitute father home from the Philippines.
She said he moved to the Philippines after suffering a stroke in 2009, which left him unable to fend for himself.
Speaking to the i newspaper, she said: “He has the mind of a child and nobody to look after him in the Philippines. If I don’t get him home soon he could die all alone.”
She said she had been worried for her father ever since she first discovered he had moved to the Philippines. “He’d been talking about going over to the Philippines to ‘find a new wife’. He was convinced that no woman in the UK would want him now he had brain damage, so thought going abroad was the answer.
“He was very illogical and wasn’t thinking straight.”
Martine reported him missing and contacted the police, British Embassy and the British Consulate appealing for help.
Eventually, Colin was tracked down in Manila and was persuaded to telephone his daughter. Although he said he was fine, he admitted to not having access to vital medication.
“I don’t know which doctor deemed him fit to fly but he wasn’t of sound mind so he should never been allowed to get on a plane,” Martine said. “I begged him to come home — to try and find a way to get back, but it just wouldn’t register.”
After this brief contact, several years passed with no further communication.
However, last week, she received a Facebook message from an employee at a police station in Iloilo City called Sheila Kim Iglesias, with a photograph of her father.
Martine spoke to Sheila on the phone, who described how Colin had come into the station to ask for help. The staff gave him food and a bed for a few nights, before taking him to a Crisis Intervention Unit.
Martine has now launched a fund-raising campaign to help fund her rescue mission to the Philippines.
“The air fare there and back is £3,000 for the two of us alone and there is no way I can find that kind of money,” she said.
“I am desperate to get him home so I can give him the care he needs and make sure he has his medication. He looked emaciated in his photos and I worry that he will die soon if he doesn’t come back.”
A spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “Our staff are in contact with the authorities in the Philippines regarding a British man in Iloilo, and are also in contact with his family in the UK.”
To donate to Martine’s fundraiser, click here.
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