Posted: Monday | August 13, 2012 | 4:30 PM
PAGCOR President and COO Jorge Sarmiento hands over relief goods to an elderly resident of Rosario, Cavite during the corporation’s relief operations in the area last August 12, 2012. A total of 1,000 families residing in Rosario, Cavite who were affected by the recent flooding benefited from the activity.
Baseco barangay officials prepare the relief goods given by the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) for distribution to 2,000 families living in the Baseco Compound last August 11, 2012.
The Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (PAGCOR) recently conducted relief operations for 10,000 families in Metro Manila and nearby provinces who were displaced by the massive flooding caused by Habagat. Among them are 1,000 families living in Guiguinto, Bulacan.
Flood victims residing at the Baseco Compound in Tondo, Manila head home after receiving relief goods from PAGCOR
Henry Reyes, PAGCOR’s Assistant VP for Community Relations and Services Department, led the distribution of relief goods for the flood victims in Tumana, Marikina City.
PAGCOR implemented relief efforts for 1,000 families in the municipality of Guiguinto, Bulacan. The town became one of the province’s most severely affected areas when Habagat flooded most of NCR and Luzon during the second week of August 2012.
PAGCOR trucks transported relief packages containing rice, water, canned goods and other basic commodities for thousands of flood victims in Manila, Marikina, Tarlac, Bulacan, Rizal and Cavite.
PAGCOR distributed relief packs to 2,000 families in Barangay Baseco, Tondo. The state-owned gaming agency also gave relief goods to 3,000 families badly hit by the flooding in Tumana and Nangka, Marikina City; Sta. Ana, Manila; and Malabon City. In the provinces, PAGCOR conducted relief operations for a total of 5,000 families in Concepcion, Tarlac; Guiguinto, Bulacan; Rosario, Cavite; Taytay, Rizal; and San Isidro, Tanay, Rizal.
PAGCOR Chairman and CEO Cristino Naguiat, Jr. said this is only the first tranche of the agency’s Habagat relief operations. “We have allocated a total budget of P8.14 million for our relief operations. We hope to be able to give help to at least 20,000 families. There were so many of our countrymen who were badly affected by this recent flooding. Itong aming relief operations ang paraan ng PAGCOR para matulungan ang ating mga kababayan na labis na naapektuhan ng kalamidad na ito.”
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported that the intense rain affected close to 600,000 families or more than 2.6 million individuals in 156 towns and 34 cities in 16 provinces of Region 1 (Ilocos), Region 3 (Central Luzon), Region 4-A (CALABARZON), Region 4-B (MIMAROPA), Region 6 (Western Visayas) and Metro Manila.
The beneficiaries of the relief operation and their city officials were quick to express their gratitude to PAGCOR for the help extended by the agency to the flood victims.
“Sa PAGCOR, kay Chairman Bong Naguiat at COO Jorge Sarmiento at sa lahat ng tumulong sa amin ngayon, maraming maraming salamat po sa ginawa ninyong relief mission dito sa aming bayan. Malaking tulong po itong inyong ginawa,” said Guiguinto, Bulacan Councilor Ariel Arceo.
The more than week-long torrential rains submerged the town of Guiguinto, Bulacan in chest-high waters and displaced 10,000 families. This was a first in the history of the municipality according to Arceo. “Noong Ondoy hindi kami naapektuhan pero sobra kaming naapektuhan nitong Habagat. Napakataas po ng Guiguinto. Ngayon lang nangyari ito,” he shared.
Rehabilitation efforts are now being initiated by the local government of Guiguinto. Since such efforts will take time, the immediate priority is to provide the residents with clothing, food, water and shelter. “Kaya nagpapasalamat kami sa PAGCOR at iba pang nagbigay ng basic commodities sa aming kababayan,” he said.
Aida Olivo, a 61 year old resident of Barangay Tuktukan in Guiguinto, was among those who benefited from PAGCOR’s relief operations. “Nasalanta ang bahay namin. Iniwan na lang namin sa bahay ang karamihan ng gamit namin kasi natakot na kami nung tumaas na ng husto ang baha. Matanda na kami ng asawa ko kaya inuna naming isalba ang mga sarili namin. Hindi kami handa kasi ngayon lang kami binaha,” she narrated.
A tearful Olivo said she is also grateful to all the people who are willing to help others in times of calamity. “Nagpapasalamat ako unang-una sa Panginoon, pangalawa sa mga taong handa kaming tulungan. Sa PAGCOR. Kasama ng pamilya ko, maraming maraming salamat sa PAGCOR sa tulong na binigay ninyo sa amin. Ito talaga ang kailangan naming ngayon.”
The recent overflow of flood waters in Tondo left Baseco compound resident Redella Montera and her family with a roofless dwelling. They were among the Baseco inhabitants whose houses are built along the port areas of Tondo.
While they were used to having waist-deep flood waters during a very bad weather, Montera said the recent floods were so high that they needed to be rescued. “Hindi po kami makakatawid kung hindi po kami nirescue at hinagisan ng mga lubid para may makapitan patawid. Kasama ko po ang asawa kong may kapansanan at anak namin. Lubos po kaming nagpapasamalat sa mga tumulong. Maraming salamat din sa PAGCOR sa tulong na ibinigay sa amin. Malaking bagay po ito, pandagdag sa aming araw-araw na pagkain,” said the teary-eyed Montera.
Baseco Barangay Chairman Kristo Hispano thanked PAGCOR for its immediate help to the 2,000 families residing in the area. According to the barangay official, the residents of Baseco are blessed to be among the flood victims to be given priority help by the corporation.
Meantime, PAGCOR also conducted relief operations in Concepcion, Tarlac where 25 out of 45 barangays became flooded when the Loong River overflowed due to the incessant rainfall last week.
“Napakalaking tulong po ng relief operations na ito ng PAGCOR dahil napakarami pong residente dito sa aming bayan na labis na naapektuhan ng pagbaha. Ang PAGCOR po ang unang ahensyang dumayo rito sa Concepcion para magbigay ng tulong kaya’t maraming-marami pong salamat,” said Purok Mabo Barangay Chairwoman Herminia David.