Rounding up help for Bohol-A A +A
Saturday, October 19, 2013
BUSINESS and civic groups in Cebu have rallied to gather and deliver water, food and other essential supplies to survivors of the 7.2 earthquake that struck Bohol Province last Tuesday.
Public buildings and private homes and offices also suffered damage in Cebu—and the belfry of the historic Basilica del Sto. Niño fell during the 7.2 magnitude quake—but the damage is far worse in Bohol.
Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) president Philip Tan said that businesses in Mandaue have resumed operations.
Government offices and commercial establishments in Cebu resumed operations Wednesday, after cleaning up the debris from the quake. Classes are scheduled to resume next week.
With Cebu practically back on its feet, the focus has shifted to rounding up aid for Bohol.
Time, talent, resources
In a press statement, The Islands Group said it has partnered with Gawad Kalinga for the distribution of the goods through its Operation: Walang Iwanan. It said the #BangonSugBohol campaign is “a call to action for individuals and organizations to come together to volunteer their time, talent and resources.”
The hashtag is a nod to the effectiveness of social media channels like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram in pointing out what’s needed in which communities, and how everyone can help.
The press statement added that #BangonSugBohol aims to provide a venue “for all concerned citizens to donate the most pressing needs of food and water, and the access to get these goods delivered.”
It has gained the support of the local governments of the Province of Cebu, Cebu City, Mandaue City and Lapu-Lapu City, as well as Cebu’s business and civic organizations.
The campaign has organized a benefit concert and donation drive on Sunday, Oct. 20, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Ayala Terraces.
The MCCI’s Tan said in a phone interview yesterday that member-companies have reported only minor defects in their establishments, like broken windows and tiles. This allowed them to continue their operations, while doing repairs on the side.
At least 80 percent of their member-companies were already doing business yesterday, and Tan said the rest are optimistic they can resume operations next week. MCCI has around 200 member-companies.
Labor, trade efforts
On Oct. 15, hours after the earthquake that hit the Visayas, Tan said in an interview he was worried businesses in Mandaue and other affected areas would not immediately recover and that employees could temporarily lose their jobs.
Rogen Cumba, chief officer for relations and standards in the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) 7, said in a phone interview that they have been on the field since Wednesday to look for displaced workers. They can become beneficiaries of Dole’s emergency employment program.
“What we want here in Dole is to provide our (displaced) workers with an opportunity to earn while they are still waiting for businesses to recover,” Cumba said in Cebuano.
Cumba said that those who were displaced and are interested to find a temporary job can go to the employment service office of their local government. They can also call Dole’s field office at 234-3317 or the Cebu Provincial Office at 266-7424.
In line with the post-quake recovery campaign, Islands Souvenirs released a new line of shirts carrying the #BangonSugBohol message. A percentage of the proceeds will go to the earthquake survivors.
“We can wear our support and contribute to the efforts of rebuilding Cebu and Bohol. Your actions will go a long way in helping our brothers and sisters in need,” said CEO Jay Aldeguer.
All Islands stores and hotels, he added in the same press statement, will also serve as drop-off points for relief goods. “These drop-off points were designated to make donations more systematic and accessible,” Aldeguer said. Bottled water is the paramount need.
So far, the campaign has drawn the support of the Cebu Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Philippine Retailers Association, Mandaue Chamber of Commerce, Cebu Business Club, Movement for a Livable Cebu, Sacred Heart School–Ateneo de Cebu, Philippine Association of Meat Processors, Sacred Heart School – Ateneo de Cebu Alumni Association, Rotary International, Rotary District 3860 Zone 1, Rotaract Club of Cebu Fuente, Rotary Club of Cebu Fuente, Creative Thespians Club, and Unified Artists of Cebu.
Other organizations who have joined the campaign are Ipanema, Basic Graphics, Dranix Distributor, Inc., Airwoks Aviation Academy, Nature’s Spring, Bo’s Coffee, Ayala Center Cebu, Chikaan, SM City Cebu, Spectrum, Oakridge Business Park, Sonic Boom Philippines, A-List Events and PR Advertising, Performance and Classics Enthusiasts, Parkmall, Ninja, Montebello Villa Hotel, Go Large Graphics, Lakwatsa Restolounge, Carla Marie Adlawan, Virginia Foods, istorya.net., University of Cebu, Starcraft, Saint Vincent General Hospital, Fighter Wine, Gaisano Capital, Rhipstop, Summit Natural Drinking Water, Costabella Tropical Beach Hotel, Knapsack Productions, I am Epic Event Photographers Cebu, Juanito I. King Foundation, Inc., and 6R Group of Companies. (PR)
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 19, 2013.