As one priest puts it, a single can of sardines can go a long way. Or you can be more generous and send cooked dishes like adobo or tinola—like what they serve at evacuation centers in Bulacan.
The Philippine Daily Inquirer (PDI) and the Corporate Network for Disaster Response (CNDR) are appealing to the public for assistance in behalf of communities affected by recent Typhoons “Pedring” and “Quiel.”
Donations such as canned goods, noodles, rice, water, hygiene kits and blankets may be sent to the Inquirer head office on Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets in Makati City.
Cash donations may be deposited in the Inquirer Help Fund’s Current Account No. 4951-0067-56, under the name of Philippine Daily Inquirer Inc., in the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) branch in Intramuros; or in CNDR’s BPI Savings Account No. 0031-0654-02 or BDO Savings Account No. 004640030358.
CNDR is a network of business associations, corporations and corporate foundations whose objective is to rationalize and institutionalize the disaster management efforts of the business community.
For inquiries, please call Inquirer’s corporate affairs office at 8994426 or 8978808 and look for Connie Kalagayan or Bianca Kasilag.
Manila Archbishop Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales on Monday announced that all offertory collections from Sunday’s Masses will go to typhoon victims, particularly those whose homes were flooded in Central Luzon.
“We are reminding all our parish priests (in the diocese) that all of their Sunday collections will be allocated to the victims of the typhoon and flooding in Bulacan, Pampanga and other areas hit by the calamity,” Rosales said on Church-run Radio Veritas.
The Church had earlier mobilized its social and charity arms to provide relief to affected families in Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga and Quezon provinces.
Fr. Anton Pascual, executive director of Caritas Manila, said various churches in Metro Manila had started collecting donations, both in cash and in kind.
A truck from the Diocese of Nueva Ecija was expected to arrive at Caritas Manila’s main office in Pandacan, Manila, to pick up relief goods prepared since last week, Pascual said over Radio Veritas.
He encouraged parishioners to continue giving assistance in the form of food, clothes and medicines. “It doesn’t need to be a lot, even a single canned good would go a long way,” the priest said.
Pascual also asked for prayers: “In this month of the Holy Rosary, let us call on heaven not to give us strong typhoons anymore because our country is still suffering from the previous storms.”
Funds running dry
In San Fernando, Pampanga province, Auxiliary Bishop Roberto Mallari asked President Aquino to consider drawing urgently needed relief funds from the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program, the government’s incentive system for poor families to send children to school.
“The typhoon victims really need a lot of help [but] if the government does not have enough funds for them, it must use the CCT fund to help out those in Central Luzon, northern Luzon and even the Bicol region,” Mallari said.
esources were already running low on rescue missions and relief operations for the estimated 1.7 million calamity victims in Central Luzon.
“The resources of local governments are depleted now,” said Adelina Apostol, regional director of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). “They’re trying to stretch what they have.”
Olongapo City and the provincial governments of Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Pampanga, Tarlac and Zambales have spent more than P10 million for relief assistance since September 27, a report from the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) showed.
The regional office of the DSWD has so far distributed more than P10 million worth of food packs and other items, Apostol said.
The United Nations’ World Food Program said it was distributing 100 tons of high energy biscuits to augment government relief assistance.
The Department of Tourism’s local office in Central Luzon has begun collecting donations for flood victims in the region in Angeles City, said Regional Director Ronaldo Tiotuico.
In Bulacan, Governor Wilhelmino Sy-Alvarado said the province still needed portable toilets, citing the lack of such facilities in the evacuation centers.
The governor said the province also needed additional supplies of bottled water, rice and food for residents in flood-hit villages especially in the towns of Calumpit, Hagonoy, Paombong and parts of the capital Malolos.
Feasting on adobo
In Candaba, Pampanga, schools have been converted into evacuation centers in Mandasig and Pasig villages, where officials said evacuees had been “well-attended” and enjoyed relatively better conditions compared to others.
Around 117 families there have been provided more than the usual fare of donated food items. They have feasted on pork adobo, chicken tinola, tilapia or eggs with hefty servings of rice, according to Candaba Mayor Jerry Pelayo.
A doctor comes to the evacuation centers daily to check the health of the evacuees, who are given blankets and mats, along with rations of bottled mineral water. Each classroom, which accommodates 15 families, has a toilet, the mayor added.
The provincial boards of Bulacan, Pampanga and Nueva Ecija have declared their respective provinces under a state of calamity, enabling the local disaster risk reduction and management councils to use their calamity fund.
The OCD will recommend to Mr. Aquino the declaration of Central Luzon in a state of calamity, said Nigel Lontoc, assistant director of the agency in Central Luzon.
The new disaster risk reduction law requires local governments to set only 5 percent of its annual budget as calamity fund.
For the poorer municipalities (those with annual incomes ranging from P15 million to P35 million), calamity funds can run to P5 million or less in a year. With reports from Jocelyn R. Uy in Manila; Tonette Orejas, Gabriel Cardinoza, Yolanda Sotelo and Villamor Visaya Jr., Inquirer Northern Luzon, and Carmela Reyes-Estrope, Inquirer Central Luzon
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