22 November 2013

Gov’t, private firms give more typhoon aid - SBMA launches donation drive

Government agencies and private companies have sent more donations to victims of Super Typhoon Yolanda in the Visayas.

Last Monday, Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority chairman Roberto Garcia launched a campaign to gather donations from companies and employees in Subic.

Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction-Philippines, a South Korean shipbuilder based in Subic Bay, donated 2,041 sacks of rice worth P4 million and these were turned over to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

“Hanjin has responded to our call for donations to help our government in the relief efforts. Other locators here are also having their own way of collecting goods that they may send to the typhoon victims,” Garcia said.

The Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) has sent an initial 10,000 family emergency medical (FEM) kits to the typhoon victims in Leyte and Samar.

The FEM kits contain medicine for common illnesses such as fever, cough, colds and diarrhea.

Jose Ferdinand Rojas II, PCSO general manager, said the FEM kits will be distributed in evacuation centers where displaced families took refuge at the height of the typhoon.

PCSO chairman Margarita Juico said the PCSO Board of Directors also made it a policy to subsidize the hospital bills of patients directly affected by calamities who are being treated at government hospitals and healthcare facilities.

The policy was applied after Typhoons Sendong and Pablo, the monsoon floods in 2012, landslide in Compostela Valley and other natural calamities in the past.

Meanwhile, the Air Materiel Wing Savings and Loan Association, Inc. (AMWSLAI), the second largest non-stock savings and loan association in the country, has started giving calamity loans at reduced interest rate to its members in calamity-stricken areas in the Visayas. It also devised a system that will speed up the processing and release of loans.

There are more than 207,000 AMWSLAI members all over the country, most of them soldiers and policemen and their families.

“To pay tribute to their unparalleled heroism and patriotism and to assist them rise above and rebuild their livelihood, AMWSLAI has started giving out calamity loans at reduced interest rate for its members who were adversely affected by the two recent calamities: the earthquake in Bohol and Super Typhoon Yolanda in Eastern, Central and Western Visayas,” AMWSLAI chairman Ricardo Nolasco Jr. said.

The Board of Trustees of AMWSLAI also gave donations in kind and in cash, including the budget for their Christmas party this year, and mobilized its personnel to help in rehabilitation efforts.

Maynilad Water Services, Inc., on the other hand, donated potable water, food and other relief items.

Its employees also helped in relief operations. They proceeded to the DSWD National Resource Operations Center in Pasay City to help load relief goods to delivery trucks that will transport the items to relief centers.

Samar group airs appeal

Convenors of a newly formed group of Samareños aired an urgent appeal to fellow Samareños here and abroad for help in rebuilding communities in two Samar provinces that have been devastated by Typhoon Yolanda.

Tindog SAMAR convenors, led by Omi Royandoyan, Rene Nachura and Charo Cabardo, said victims of the typhoon in both Eastern Samar and the main Samar province deserve more than solemn prayers. They need immediate relief for their survival.

“We urge big businesses, international aid agencies, non-government organizations, and Samarnon patronal organizations in Metro Manila and in the United States to help the towns of Basey and Marabut in Samar; and Lawaan, Balangiga, Giporlos, Quinapondan, Hernani, MacArthur, Salcedo, Mercedes and Guiuan in Eastern Samar,” Tindog SAMAR said in a statement.

Convened a week after Yolanda slammed into the country, Tindog SAMAR aims to help facilitate relief and rehabilitation operations in Samar.

Tindog SAMAR convenors saw the need to form the organization to help extend the reach of relief operations, especially for typhoon victims in both Samar provinces who have yet to get help.

Meanwhile, the local government of Legazpi, in partnership with Sunwest Group Holding Co. Inc. and other private firms, is deploying more aid to Central Visayas.

Team Bicol is sending additional dump trucks, a boom truck and fuel tanker together with a 19-man contingent of electricians, mechanics and cooks from Sunwest Construction and Development Corp. and Misibis Bay.

Other volunteers from private firms in Legazpi City were also mobilized to augment the first team of Sunwest volunteers who first arrived in Leyte on Nov. 12.

Team Bicol has deployed more than 20 dump trucks and earth moving machines courtesy of Sunwest Group. The team is currently helping in massive clearing operations in Palo, Leyte.

Container vans donated to Red Cross

Harbour Center Port Area Inc. donated 40-footer and 20-footer container vans with generator and air conditioner to the Philippine Red Cross. These vans will serve as blood bank and PRC office in Tacloban, replacing the temporary blood facility in Leyte Park Hotel.

Chairman Richard Gordon said the PRC has augmented blood supply in Leyte, particularly at the Divine Word Hospital and other areas in the Visayas hit by Yolanda, from the PRC headquarters blood bank in Manila and Cebu City chapter.

Cebu Pacific continues humanitarian flights

Cebu Pacific, for its part, continues to operate daily flights between Cebu and Tacloban and Manila and Tacloban.

The airline reserves seats for humanitarian purposes in its Tacloban flights.

Cebu Pacific has also transported 3,000 kilos of relief goods from the GMA Kapuso Foundation to Iloilo; another 3,000 kilos to Cebu and 9,000 kilos of relief goods to Tacloban earlier this week.

The airline will be transporting an additional 30,000 kilos of relief goods to Tacloban. (Perseus Echeminada, Jose Rodel Clapano, Rhodina Villanueva, Ric Sapnu, Philippine Star)