Resiliency in Disasters-A A +A
Thursday, October 24, 2013
WHEN Bohol experienced the magnitude-7.2 earthquake last week, it reminded me of what we went through during the July 16, 1990 killer earthquake.
After being isolated for almost a week before the arrival of help from the National Government, the residents of the country’s Summer Capital showed resiliency or the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties.
One thing that we may share to our fellow Filipinos who are victims of the recent earthquake is to get support from your fellowmen during these trying times.
It is during these times that we show our true human nature despite the fact that survival is still the name of the game.
If we were to recall, while others stood up to the challenge of nature, there were still some who took advantage of the situation by changing international relief goods with local goods. Remember what happened to the Spam canned products that were changed into Maling products?
What about the missing generator sets? The lost shovels? How about the tents? Or even the wool blankets that were changed to Ilocano blankets? Well up to now, these have not been properly accounted for.
And that's that!
But despite these debacles, majority of the people of Baguio have stood their ground. And that's what Baguio people have been known for, rising up to the occasion. And that's that again.
Unfortunately, Baguio people may feel insulted for our countrymen who have been victims of the recent earthquake. What with the way support is being given to them, and even how media have and is covering the event.
No offense to the Catholic sector nor to the historians who wants to preserve the churches affected by the earthquake, but if you saw how the rival networks aired their own stories for the 7 O'clock news in the first, second and third day following the disaster, then you know what I mean.
Imagine, why give focus on the structural damages received by the historical churches as against the needs of the people?
Haven't they learned from the July 16, 1990 earthquake?! If you will recall, the first thing we needed at that time was water. Luckily for us, it was the start of the rainy season and so we had the opportunity to gather water.
But if you watch national television, interviews showed the desperate call for water by victims of the earthquake not only in the areas that have been reached, but especially in the areas that have not been reached by government and the donors.
All of us know that water is the basic necessity of man. Without water, we are only good for a few days of existence. My salute to the various national line agencies that are on standby for additional support if needed. Same is true with the various donors that are constantly gathering whatever support they can muster for our countrymen.
But our call to our colleagues in the journalism profession is to help our countrymen by reporting their basic needs especially during these trying times.
With their help, government can see the position that they are going to take and on how to do it. Their needs now are food, water and shelter, and why don't we focus on that.
Let us show our resiliency by helping our countrymen that have been victims of Mother Nature. It is only through this that we can help them pass and wither the storm.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on October 25, 2013.