Albay officials acknowledge DSWD’s aid in Mayon Relief Operations

Guinobatan, Albay—The Albay mayors who were present during the Hatid-Tulong: Mayon Caravan last February 28 expressed gratitude to Dir. Arnel Garcia of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Region V for the relief augmentation to the affected families by the Mayon volcanic activities.

The Hatid-Tulong: Mayon Caravan is a humanitarian caravan, the first of a series, spearheaded by the DSWD together with other member-agencies of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) mobilized resources for the delivery of additional augmentation assistance.

As of the press time, the DSWD’s cost of assistance reached PhP84,582,344.72 comprised of 150,039 FFPs and other non-food items such as malong, dignity kits, toys, blankets, tents, sleeping kits and laminated sacks. There are 15,710 families inside evacuation centers.

DSWD Region V quickly responded to the needs of the local government units (LGUs) and provided the requested relief goods days after the first blow of Mayon eruption in January. DSWD has also provided the 28-day food requirement for the month of February as agreed.

Nine LGUs namely, Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Ligao City, Malilipot, Tabaco City, Sto. Domingo, Legazpi City and Bacacay received a total of 23,800 DSWD family food packs (FFPs) last February 28, 2018. These FFPs were ferried by 24 trucks from the DSWD warehouse in Pasay City to fulfill DSWD’s commitment to the LGUs with depleted resources.

Tabaco City Mayor Krisel Lagman-Luistro who was present during the caravan said that it is challenging to manage evacuation centers because the LGU needs to spend at least PhP400,000 a day for 2,000 affected families but thanked DSWD for the additional aid.

“Digdi ko sana namati ang bilog ang suporta ning mga national government agencies (NGAs) para matabanangan ang mga LGUs. Ang tingog ta tigdadangog asin tigtatawan importansya kang DSWD (This is the only time I felt the full support from the national government agencies (NGAs) to support us, the LGUs. DSWD heed our call for help,” Luistro added.

Camalig Mayor Ahrdail Baldo also added that she felt the presence of the NGAs most specially the assistance of DSWD.

“Dakulang pasalamat kay Dir. Garcia dahil kung wara po ang DSWD, gurutom po kita, gurutom su mga evacuees ta. Indi na kami mamroblema na mga mayors ta DSWD na ang nagpakawn para sa bulan ning Pebrero (Thank you very much, Dir, Arnel Garcia. If not for your help, our evacuees will starve. We, the mayors, are no longer troubled because DSWD provided for February),” Baldo said.

Also, Mayor Herbie Aguas of Sto. Domingo and Ligao City Mayor Patricia Alzua agreed with the other mayors and personally thanked DSWD for all the assistance provided to their constituents given the financial constraints.

Office of the President honors DSWD Region V for the Mayon Relief Operations

The DSWD Region V through Dir. Garcia received the presidential watch that was awarded by the Presidential Adviser on Political Affairs Sec. Francis Tolentino from the Office of the Presidential Coordinator for Mayon Operations last February 27, 2018. The watch was accorded to DSWD because of the agency’s good performance in the ongoing Mayon Disaster Operations.

Guinobatan Mayor Gemma Ongjoco who is the host town of the Hatid Tulong: Mayon Caravan congratulated Dir. Garcia for the recognition received.

“He deserves the recognition because DSWD Region V is hands-on and is our active partner on the ground,” Ongjoco sai.

A similar watch was also awarded to the regional office of the Department of Health (DOH). (with reports from DSWD Central Office)