NEW ORLEANS - Typhoon Haiyan lashed beach communities, triggered massive landslides and caused widespread damage in the central Philippines, about 400 miles south of Manila.
Authorities have reported some deaths as a result of the storm.
Filipinos living in the New Orleans area are having a tough time reaching their families because of communications and power outages in the wake of the storm.
"My family which lives in Malabon, I have not heard from yet," said Christina Quakenbush runs a Filipino restaurant called Milkfish. "I have tried to contact them. I haven't heard back anything yet from them."
She says her family was already staying in temporary housing because of a typhoon that hit the Philippines earlier this year.
"They were in a squatters area, it was an area that they evacuated to. They were still living there when this one came. That's why I'm more worried about them now."
Haiyan hit the Philippines with sustained winds of 195 miles per hour with gusts up to 235 miles per hour.
That's compared to the 190 mile per hour sustained winds and 200 mile per hour gusts associated with Hurricane Camille, the strongest storm on record to hit the Mississippi Gulf Coast in 1969.
"There are no buildings that are in a position to withstand that kind of category-5 that made landfall in that area," said Robert Romero, president of the Filipino-American Lions Club in Greater New Orleans.
He says the typhoon hit the same people, rocked by a powerful earthquake last month.
"They were staying in some tents. Some of them were actually inside of schools and housing facilities."
Both Romero and Quakenbush are planning fundraisers for the typhoon-relief effort.
Milkfish will be raising money for the International Red Cross at its pop-up restaurant at the corner of Tchoupitoulas and St. Joseph, this weekend.