“FIGHT ON PHILIPPINES!”
Urging the nation to rise from devastation, Senator Richard J. Gordon, chairman of the Philippine National Red Cross (PNRC), cheered on the Filipinos, especially the victims of tropical storm Ondoy, to fight on as the nation rises from the devastation caused by the recent typhoon.
“FIGHT ON PHILIPPINES!" said Gordon as he led Red Cross volunteers in simultaneous disaster relief operations and clean up drive in different areas that were affected by the recent typhoon.
“Now that typhoon Ondoy has passed, our people need to focus on rebuilding their lives. This rehabilitation process will take time, effort, commitment and willpower. Sanitation and cleanliness is a crucial and vital first step towards recovery from a disaster. I urge everyone to pull resources and put all hands on the deck and share in lifting the load,” he stressed.
“We did it in Central Luzon during Mt. Pinatubo eruption and the subsequent US Bases pullout. Together we can do it again,” he added.
On Wednesday, the PNRC mobilized its 143 volunteers for relief operations and clean up drive in Quezon City and Marikina.
Gordon spearheaded the relief distribution and clean up drive at the Diosdado Macapagal Elementary School in Tatalon, Quezon City where US Ambassador Kristie Kenney, American soldiers and workers from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) also participated.
The PNRC Chairman also proceeded to other relief operations sites, which include: Benitez Elementary School in Quezon City; and, Nangka Elementary School and H. Bautista Elementary School in Marikina.
Gordon said aside from providing food items, the PNRC has set up community soup kitchens to provide hot meals, water bladders and purifiers for potable water, and portable toilets for sanitation and hygiene needs of the victims. Generators and floodlights will also be installed in the communities with no electricity.
The senator explained that while they are conducting relief efforts, the PNRC is also planning on the rehabilitation of the communities affected by the disaster.
“We are doing these relief operations to give hope to the victims. But we do not want to instill a culture of dependency, that is why we are encouraging them to help themselves and help one another. The Red Cross will be here to support them,” he said.
“We are trying to get the victims back to their houses as soon as possible. We cannot leave them in the evacuation centers because that is not the policy of the Red Cross. We are raising money to help rebeuild their homes so that they can return to their homes and go on with their living. We have built 15,000 homes for the last three years. And that is what we intend to do right here as well,” he added. (30/tgp)