Justin Bieber’s Tuesday visit to the Typhoon Haiyan ravaged Philippines to raise money for victims of last month’s disaster that killed nearly 6,000 and displaced millions more saw the superstar perform a special acoustic concert for children and families.
Footage of the show has now been released. It features an on-the-spot interview with the 19-year -old, shots of the affected region he visited, a basketball play-off, and various Filipino celebrities.
Speaking to Manila’s TV5 network during his trip to the worst-hit city of Tacloban, capital of central Leyte province, after an earlier arrival in Manila, Bieber described the reaction of kids and families to his performance.
“That was one of the most magical moments I think of my life,” the singer told TV5.
He added, “They knew all the words, they were singing Christmas songs.”
Explaining his reasons for visiting and performing at what he called the “last Believe tour show” on Twitter, Justin continued:
“I wanted to come out here and see these kids, and bring some hope to these kids. Bring some inspiration and let them know that, you know, it’s a big world and God is — God is great.”
During his visit, the Canadian teen was taken to a Unicef relief shelter located in Tacloban’s recently reopened City Central School, and the San Jose Elementary school, currently a temporary home for around 300 families.
Bieber and his crew, which included manager Scooter Braun, handed out books, T-shirts, snacks, water, and basketballs to children in Tacloban.
The pop star later played basketball with youths in the area and Chot Reyes, head coach for the Philippines National Basketball team.
Later taking to an outdoor stage, Justin sang a mix of Christmas carols, some of his own hits such as “Baby,” Mistletoe,” and “All That Matters,” a new song from his upcoming Journals collection.
Angela Kearney, a United Nations Children’s Fund emergency coordinator from Haiyan Response said,
“UNICEF is very pleased that Justin Bieber wanted to visit Tacloban, and stopped by City Central Elementary School which has suffered a great deal of structural damage,” adding, “Justin brought a lot of joy, hope and cheer to the hundreds of children who were there.”
Kearney said money raised by Bieber will be used to give children survivors “access to education, vaccinations, better nutrition, clean water and sanitation.”
Bieber mingling with children in Tacloban.
The singer reaching out to a young survivor.
In TV5’s video, Australian-Filipina actress-dancer and writer, Jasmine Curtis, said of the singer,
“Celebrities are donating and raising funds, but to personally come here and actually be involved with us… it’s heartwarming.”
Billy Joe Crawford, famed Filipino-American singer-songwriter and actor, also noted,
“I think it’s very good [“big pleasure” was the wording he used] to have someone like Justin Bieber to come out here [to] the Philippines and take his time off from his busy schedule.”
After watching the show, one female survivor told TV5, “It was like we were not hit by the typhoon, like Yolanda never came.”
Meanwhile, the network’s Entertainment Content Head Wilma Galvante said the heartthrob “was really touched with what he saw,” echoing Bieber’s words on Twitter post-concert.
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) December 10, 2013
The singer recently launched his #GiveBackPhilippines campaign, hosted by fundraising platform Prizeo. So far, nearly $720, 688 (and counting) of its $1 million target has been raised.
The quick response is likely a result of the campaign’s multiple prize draw and grand prize offer, in which the winner wins a chance to watch the singer record part of his upcoming album in a studio.
Monies raised goes to UNICEF, Action Against Hunger, and the Philam Foundation.
Visit here for details on Bieber’s #GiveBackPhilippines campaign.
Offering a heartfelt message to Haiyan survivors in TV5’s clip, Bieber said,
“You guys are the strongest people I know. Stay strong, keep your belief, and know that God is always with you.”