ACDI Multi-Purpose Cooperative flies high

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Friday, August 8, 2014


THAT passion of the 26 young officer-pilots from the Aviation Cadet Program of the Philippine Air Force (PAF) to help their fellowmen more than three decades ago when they organized the Aces Credit Development Incorporated which became a year later as ACDI Savings and Credit Cooperative has fueled ACDI to soar to greater heights.

ACDI’s journey is characterized by milestones after milestones of remarkable achievements.

It’s amazing and phenomenal, even magical, when military officers and enlisted and civilian personnel together with the AFP retirees use their collective management adroitness, entrepreneurial tactics and operational efficiency to wage a war against economic difficulties.

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It may be a different battlefield as it is one to improve the quality of life of its members.

Even then, poverty has no match against these intrepid fighters whose cooperative has become an inspiration and a beacon of light amidst the darkness of poverty.

With its vision to become a leading cooperative, ACDI’s seed capital of P200,000 has grown remarkably into more than P11 billion worth of assets, and from 26 cooperators, its membership has leaped astonishingly to more than 86,000 and continuously growing.

While ACDI has gained so much headway through an excellent operational and financial portfolio, its existence is not for the cooperative alone but for the poor communities and the threatened environment that it has committed to protect.

ACDI understands very well the present state of the environment and feels the pains of Mother Earth. Her name is Gaia and she is in pain and hemorrhaging without let-up. Her “lungs” (the forests) are almost gone.

In the Philippines, only 8 percent of that “lungs” remain as the 17 million hectares of dipterocarp forests have been ravaged, causing the massacre of all life forms that dwelt in the forest ecosystems.
Her “veins” (the rivers) are either drained or heavily polluted as 25 major rivers in our country are biologically dead.

Her fever (global warming) lingers, causing her so much discomfort, i.e., colds (storms), sneezes (typhoons), shakings (earthquakes), delirium (tsunamis) and vomiting (floods).

Yes, we have lost our ecological security and ACDI knows that even with a strong army, a country that has no ecological security is not secured at all.

Indeed, ecological disasters have become the “new normal,” thus, disasters risk reduction management and capacitating communities that are very vulnerable to flood inundation have become the order of the day.

It is in this light that ACDI has been conducting One-Week Trainings on Water Search and Rescue (Wasar), building a strong force of rescuers through intensive actual search and rescue operation trainings.
On the seventh day, the trainees can only graduate after finishing the final stage of being dropped a kilometer away from the shore then, have to swim back to the shore.

After that, we can aptly say that the trainees are now ready to save lives when Sendongs or Yolandas hit again.

Three high-risk barangays in flooding in Cagayan de Oro were recipients of Wasar training, namely, Balulang, Canitoan and Puntod, the most recent.

Hon. Marvin Beja, Barangay Captain of Puntod, was so thankful to ACDI, expressing his utmost gratitude during the closing ceremony in a beach in Opol, Mis. Oriental on August 3, 2014.

The barangay has now 46 well-trained rescuers. Not only that, just like the other barangays, it was also the recipient of search and rescue equipment such as flashlights, searchlights, ropes, life vests and head caps.

Today, the residents in these barangays and those nearby can now sleep well at night despite heavy rains.

That Dec. 17, 2011 tragedy called Sendong that drowned some 3,000 people and had rendered some 11,000 families homeless had given us a strong warning: Heal the blighted land back to life or we all perish.

While we work to regain back the lost ecological security, we must now be all ready for any eventuality, thanks to ACDI.

Yes, we firmly salute the Chairman, Major General Gilbert Llanto (Ret.) and the Board of Directors who came during the closing ceremonies: BGen. Lorenzo Sumicad (Ret.), BGen. Neil Gacrama (Ret.), BGen. Pedro Rieza (Ret.) and BGen. William Turalde (Ret). Also in attendance was BGen. Danilo Ferrer (Ret.) of the Oro Rescue 9000 Inc. together with the Chairman of Oro Rescue, Mr. Arthur Dael.

In his message, BGen. Sumicad said that, “We are aware that natural disaster happens very often in different parts of the world and it will continue to happen because of climate change... hence, we must all be prepared.”

In congratulating the graduates, he further said, “you have generated skills and knowledge in this training. We are able to impart to you various techniques and skills in saving human lives... your strong commitment and dedication to save lives are indeed the most important part of serving the community.”

BGen. Sumicad also expressed ACDI’s gratitude to those who contributed to the success of the training: The training staff from the Department of Health and the Tactical Operations Group 10 and the 505 Search and Rescue Group of the Philippine Air Force represented by M/Sgt. Abel Idusma who received the TAGAPAGTANGGOL NG KALISAN AWARD from Sulog and the Cooperative Development Authority.

Our highest commendation also goes to Ms. Juliet B. Saavedra, Area Head, ACDI, Central Mindanao and to Ms. Claudine Malanog, ACDI Branch Head in Cagayan de Oro for hosting the training.

The ACDI Multi-Purpose Cooperative is without doubt the leading edge in advancing the essence of cooperativism and as a token of our utmost appreciation, the Cooperative Development Authority has bestowed to ACDI a National Award for exemplifying to the highest degree that of being, a Transformative Cooperative for People, Planet, Prosperity and Peace, in addition to the many prestigious awards it has received.

To that, our firm salute!

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on August 08, 2014.

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