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Metro Manila, 3 May 2024 – The contributions of the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) to the progress and development of the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Medicine (UPCM) was recognized by UP Manila’s new and 10th Chancellor Dr. Michael L. Tee during his investiture ceremony last April 30. 

Dr. Tee personally expressed his gratitude to PRC Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon for initiating and spearheading the provision of full scholarships to 24 economically disadvantaged students of UPM. The PRC is notably the biggest full scholarship provider of the UPCM, covering the tuition fees, living allowance, and  transportation allowance, among others, of medical students and those enrolled from allied health programs. 

Chairman Gordon congratulated and thanked Dr. Tee for acknowledging the efforts of PRC. He also reaffirmed his commitment to helping the country address its shortage of doctors, particularly in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, as the majority of the country’s medical personnel seek better opportunities abroad.

“At the PRC, we only have the “common tao” but we have accomplished a lot. Imagine the possibilities if we could mobilize more doctors for our humanitarian responses. This underscores the importance of investing in the education and future of the youth because it ensures a far-reaching impact for the whole society in the long run,” said Chairman Gordon. 

Dr. Tee also acknowledged the support provided by the PRC during countless fire emergencies at the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) in recent years while Chairman Gordon also recognized Dr. Tee’s contributions to PRC’s COVID-19 Operations. It can be noted that Dr. Tee, in 2021, led the research study that validated the use of saliva for the diagnosis of COVID-19 –  a collaborative project of PRC, University of Illinois, and UP Manila. 

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Today, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) is celebrating its 77 years of transformative humanitarian service to the country — offering an opportunity for PRC’s 102 chapters nationwide to amplify their common agenda and reaffirm their purposes and commitment to PRC’s mission and vision that have guided the organization for the past decades.

For over seven decades, the PRC evolved beyond its original conception as a blood collection agency and has now become a powerful instrument of change, dignity, and progress to the lives of millions of Filipinos during all kinds of disasters, including typhoons, earthquakes, armed conflicts, and disease outbreaks.

To provide the life-saving services it is recognized for, the PRC increased the quantity and quality of its logistics, assets, and facilities over the years. It strengthened the capacity of its Operations Center, a state-of-the-art command center connected to all the chapters across the country. The center ensures that the organization can promptly respond to any emergency, providing a coordinated response that maximizes the impact of the organization’s volunteers and logistics.

The organization also now boasts a fleet of 178 ambulances, food trucks, rescue trucks, fire trucks, humvees, amphibians, rescue boats, Volunteer Emergency Response Vehicles, water tankers with water bladders, and payloaders to clear debris in case of disasters. The MV Amazing Grace, a humanitarian ship, is another vital asset that provides rescue and relief items to various islands in the Philippines.

To operate these assets and logistics, PRC Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon invested heavily in recruiting volunteers and developing an extensive network of trained emergency medical services personnel. Under his leadership, the PRC now has over two million volunteers across the country who can operate humanitarian assets, perform first aid, or respond to emergencies in their communities.

The PRC’s enhanced logistics, increased number of volunteers, and Operations Center fulfills the equation “Volunteers + Logistics + Information Technology = A Red Cross that is Always First, Always Ready, and Always There” – a mantra that guides PRC in its responses to vulnerable communities. Its focus on these three areas has enabled it to provide critical assistance to millions of Filipinos affected by natural disasters, pandemics, and other emergencies.

Over the years, Chairman Gordon, along with PRC Secretary-General Dr. Gwen Pang, also crystallised the need for immediate collective action to address climate change, advance gender equality, augment the country’s blood requirement, and improve the grassroot healthcare provision. These endeavors significantly enhanced the organization’s efforts to secure peace, sustainable development, and humanitarian aid. Chairman Gordon’s legacy will endure for years, as the PRC remains to inspire hope and aid for Filipinos in need.

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Metro Manila, 8 April 2024 – The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) is selected as one of the Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies (RCRC NS) assigned to develop advanced methods to strengthen the Resource Mobilization Development (RMD) and financial sustainability of NS in the Asia Pacific region. 

During the three-day Joint Resource Mobilization Development (RMD) Meeting last April 3-5, facilitated by PRC and International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the PRC, Fiji Red Cross Society, Mongolian Red Cross Society, and Bangladesh Red Crescent Society (BDRCS), other NS, Partner National Societies, and International Committee of the Red Cross discussed RM development priorities and co-created country specific and regional implementation pathways towards improved financial sustainability. 

PRC Secretary-General Dr. Gwen Pang shared that the meeting aims to provide a platform for RCRC NS to converse about the crucial need to advance the financial sustainability among national societies. 

“We have to be forward-looking, to create more sustainable domestic solutions, and to formulate concrete plans of action. Change is not always easy but we have to ask ourselves how we can bring positive change to our financial stability. This is a chance to be more proactive and decide what financial sustainability would look like in the future,” said Dr. Pang.

FRCS Secretary-General, Ragigia Dawai; BDRCS Secretary-General, Kazi Shofiqul Azam, and MRCS Secretary-General, Bolormaa Nordov met with PRC Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon to further discuss the initiative. 

The PRC presented its long-term partnerships with the government and private sector and several of its self-sustaining programs, including commercial first aid, Blood Samaritan Program, and Ambulance Samaritan Program, and discussed how their significantly sustained PRC services. 

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CEBU, PHILIPPINES -The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) turned over 71 full shelters with solar-powered panels amounting to P30 million for families that lost their homes due to Typhoon Odette (Rai) on 26 March 2024 in Barangay Poblacion, Alegria, Cebu.

“As I’ve said, PRC stands for hope and we are always hopeful that what we are doing is paving the path for these families towards healing and recovery. Red Cross is not in the business of giving dole outs – we are in the business of giving hope. What’s also special about the additional shelters is that these are all solar-powered,” said PRC Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon.

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The Full Shelter Assistance (FSA) project focused not only in the Queen City of the South but also in Bohol and Surigao del Norte—the provinces severely affected by Typhoon Odette in 2021. Last May 2023, the PRC already turned over 70 full shelters in Talibon, Bohol.

The project was made possible through the collaborative efforts of the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Society (IFRC) under the leadership of the IFRC Head of Delegation Sanjeev Kafley and IFRC Program Coordinator Gopal Mukherjee, and the Municipality of Alegria.

Odette was the strongest typhoon that struck the Philippines in 2021 where more than half of Cebu’s population of five million were affected by the disaster according to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). The Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) stated that in the province’s capital, Cebu City, the total damages brought by Typhoon Odette to infrastructure, utilities, and agriculture in Cebu City reached P1.7 billion.

In Cebu alone, the PRC and its partners already built 8,741 houses; repaired 1,263 houses; provided livelihood assistance to 8,854 families; cash grants to 12,517 families; and food items to 21,789 households. These provisions are part of the P1 billion worth of developmental projects given by the PRC to vulnerable people in the province because of Typhoons Odette and Ursula, Naga City Landslide, and COVID-19 pandemic.

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Tagbilaran, Bohol  – On March 26, Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon and Secretary-General Dr. Gwen Pang, along with representatives from the local government unit of Bohol, celebrated the completion of renovations made to its Bohol Chapter, which sustained structural damage during the onslaught of Typhoon Odette in 2021.

The renovations, amounting to over P2.7 million, was made possible through the support of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Society (IFRC). 

“I am proud that we are part of Bohol’s progress. When Odette happened, we were among the first in disaster responses and also the first to provide recovery operations not just in Bohol but in the rest of the country. We, at the PRC, are not mere spectators. We take actions, save lives, and leave a mark,” said Chairman Gordon.  

The PRC is recognized to have provided the largest humanitarian aid in Bohol during Typhoon Odette and the 7.2 magnitude Bohol earthquake in 2013. Over PhP200 million worth of assistance was provided to families affected by these disasters alone, including provision of 420 full shelters and repair of 3,182 houses. 

Chairman Gordon and Dr. Pang said that the renovation is one way to strengthen PRC’s service delivery in the region. “It is high time we give our countrymen in Bohol the best humanitarian service we can give,” said Dr. Pang. 

“Each day, the PRC responds to various emergencies. It’s crucial for everyone to know the importance of empowering our communities, households, and schools with vital skills like first aid and disaster preparedness. We cannot save people if we are not there, but with a first aider in every home, immediate action becomes feasible.”

The PRC will recruit more volunteers, conduct first-aid training in communities, and facilitate blood donation drives in the forthcoming months in the Visayas region. At present, the PRC has a disaster resilience project in Bohol with focus on nature-based solutions. 

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We, at the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), express our deepest concern for the 216 people reported by Agusan del Sur Provincial Health Officials, as having been hospitalized on Monday night due to a food- or water-borne illness in Brgy. Tandang Sora in Esperanza, Agusan del Sur.

The welfare of the people is of utmost concern to us and we are doing everything we can to ensure that every individual taken to the hospital is out of harm’s way at the soonest time.

We are comforted to learn from our chapter in Agusan del Sur that as of last night, 90 of the patients were already discharged and our local teams assisted the local government in taking a number of the patients to their respective houses. We will continue to follow up on their situation.

We have coordinated with the local government to ensure that the needs of the affected people are immediately addressed. We have also set up a welfare desk at Esperanza Medicare Community Hospital to help the remaining patients and their relatives. We provided medicines to help patients as some hospital executives alerted PRC of the need for increased medicines.

While the cause of the health emergency remains under investigation by the local government, our hot meals program in the province was suspended until the completion of the probe.

We will wait for the results of the ongoing investigation and extend our support to the authorities as they conduct the investigation. We will remain transparent and will closely coordinate with the local government on this serious matter.

As of 10pm on February 20, we have served 1,142 food packs in Agusan del Sur. For the entire Mindanao operation, from the time the province started experiencing shearline and trough of the low pressure area (LPA), we have provided sleeping kits to 916 families – 211 of which were sent to Agusan del Sur (AgSur); hygiene kits to 1,042 families – 286 of which went to AgSur; non-standard hygiene kits to 96 families; jerry cans to 1,042 families – 286 of which were sent to AgSur; and kitchen sets to 984 families – 518 to families in AgSur.

A total of 432 PRC volunteers and 59 PRC staff showed up to help Mindanao. About 3,020 families received non-food items; and prepositioned 140 pieces of cadaver bags, 50 of which were already utilized.

PRC sent an overwhelming response for Mindanao with eight food trucks, three water tankers, one 6×6 truck, five ambulance units, three relief trucks, three volunteer emergency response vehicles (VERVs), one buffalo tank, and four water bladders composed of 5,000-liter load and 10,000-liter load.

In a press conference on Tuesday, Esperanza Mayor Deo Manpatilan, Jr. was quoted as saying: “This is not the time to point fingers especially since the Philippine Red Cross only wants to help. There is an ongoing investigation. We hope to prevent the same situation from happening in the future.”

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MANILA, PHILIPPINES – The Rotary Club of Manila (RCM), Rotaract Club of Manila (RAC Manila), and Rotary Club of De La Salle University (RAC DLSU) signed a memorandum of agreement with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) yesterday at RCM’s 27th weekly membership meeting in Makati City.

“We just sent 20 bags of blood in Davao de Oro because of the landslide. In this country, the Philippine Red Cross is the biggest supplier of blood. If you need blood, just call 143 and we will deliver blood to hospitals. We have the Blood Samaritan Program for those who cannot afford blood processing fees. Through this MOA, I hope that we can have an active partnership with the Rotary Club” said PRC Chairman and CEO Dick Gordon.

The agreement states that the RCM, RCA Manila, and RAC DLSU shall continue to conduct mobile blood donations every year with the PRC to ensure sufficient blood supply in the country. In 2023, the PRC supplied 60% of the country’s demand for blood; this year, the foremost humanitarian organization aims to supply about 70%.

Aside from the intensified blood donation partnership, the Rotary Club also encourages its members to be part of the PRC’s Enhanced Platinum Membership, a program that offers accidental, death, disablement, dismemberment, medical, burial assistance, and hospitalization benefits with an annual fee of P1,200. The members are also entitled to free ambulance service and one blood unit in times of need.

“This MOA sets the stage for Rotarians to donate blood within six months, and this will continue beyond my term. In fact, the major feature of our MOA is to have our members sign up as members of the Philippine Red Cross. We’re looking at the safety and welfare of our members through this joint venture with the PRC,” Rotary Club of Manila President Rafael Alunan III added.

The RCM has been an active ally of the PRC Blood Services since 2009; almost 300 blood units were accumulated in total. Aside from the blood donation partnership with the PRC, the RCM also donated more than 400 wheelchairs to numerous people with mobility impairments in the country through its Imagine Rotary: Mobility for Dignity program that started last year.

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LEFT-RIGHT: REACT Regional Chief, Dr. Antonio Agustin; REACT National President, Mr. Henry Bicoy; PRC Secretary-General, Dr. Gwen Pang, and PRC Assistant Secretary General for Corporate and Business Services, Mr. Ramon Murillo.

The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and the Regional Emergency Assistance Communications Team (REACT) Philippines, Inc. signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) today to solidify their collaboration in humanitarian responses and intensify the former’s communication capacity in times of emergencies and crisis. 

PRC Secretary-General Dr. Gwen Pang signed the MOA with REACT National President, Mr. Henry Bicoy, and REACT Regional Chief, Dr. Antonio Agustin, at PRC’s National Headquarters in Mandaluyong. 

The MOA ensures that the PRC can call on and mobilize REACT’s first aiders, medical personnel, engineers, search and rescue teams, and radio operators, among others, during emergency and disaster operations. REACT also pledged to utilize its communication resources to help PRC fortify its communication capacity and support PRC’s service delivery programs and humanitarian campaigns, such as blood donation drives and RC143 volunteering program.  

PRC Chairman and CEO, Richard “Dick” Gordon, expressed his gratitude to REACT, saying, “We are looking for organizations, agencies, and individuals that can work with us in alleviating the sufferings of the most vulnerable Filipinos and REACT is definitely one of them. We stand ready to provide training to your first responders.”

Dr. Gwen Pang, in her speech, reiterated the importance of the partnership and its crucial role in supporting PRC’s operations: “In situations where internet and communication networks are unreliable, we use radios to communicate. This partnership with REACT is vital in the communication aspect of our humanitarian operations, especially those in geographically-isolated areas where there is limited network coverage.” 

REACT is the largest Radio Civic Organization in the country, and it first started its partnership with the PRC in 2008. PRC Assistant Secretary General for Corporate and Business Services, Mr. Ramon Murillo, and PRC Disaster Management Services Manager, Ms. Criselda Longga, were also present in the MOA signing ceremony. 

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Caption: PRC Secretary-General, Dr. Gwen Pang, signed the MOA along with PRC Caloocan Chapter OIC, Mr. Carlo Angeles, Chairman of PRC Caloocan Chapter’s Board of Directors, Mr. Danilo Sanchez, MCU University President, Dr. Renato Tanchoco, Jr., and MCU Academic Affairs Director, Ms. Giandelu Carissa Santos.

CALOOCAN, METRO MANILA – In a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) signing ceremony today, January 22, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and the Manila Central University (MCU) strengthened their partnership to serve the country together in case of disasters and humanitarian emergencies. 

“We are establishing partnerships with different institutions to prepare for crises and disasters, especially now that more catastrophic events are happening in the world, and our country is ranked number one in disaster risk. The partnership between the PRC and the MCU is one excellent way to be prepared,” PRC Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon said. 

In the agreement, the PRC and MCU vowed to optimize each other’s medical and welfare services. PRC and MCU will further train their medical personnel in mass casualty incidents (MCIs) to prepare for large-scale disasters, especially earthquakes and typhoons. In the event that hospitals become overwhelmed or there are not enough beds for patients during such cases, the PRC will build Emergency Field Hospitals (EFH) and MCU’s member-doctors will be ready to provide emergency medical duties to PRC’s EFH.  

MCU also agreed to intensify its support to PRC’s humanitarian activities, such as the Red Cross Youth and Membership Accident Assistance Benefits (MAAB) program, which provide protection to members through accident insurance coverage in exchange for their volunteer service. The PRC, meanwhile, vowed to provide capacity-building activities, such as simulation exercises and immersion experiences, for MCU employees and students. 

PRC Secretary-General, Dr. Gwen Pang, meanwhile, views the partnership as an opportunity to nurture students, the future citizens of the country, to not only be academically proficient but also compassionate, resilient, and ready to contribute to the betterment of society.

MCU has been a partner of PRC in various humanitarian endeavors for the last decade, including participation in PRC’s blood donation drives, providing training to its medical students and teaching personnel under PRC’s first aid and basic life support courses, and enrolling over 1000 students and university personnel for PRC’s MAAB program. Member-doctors of the MCU also served as volunteers in PRC’s Operation during the Feast of the Black Nazarene and currently assist in PRC’s health caravan, a healthcare and medical consultation activity conducted nationwide. 

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PASAY CITY, METRO MANILA – Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Chairman and CEO Richard “Dick” Gordon expressed gratitude to Italian food company Barilla and Marriott Hotel Manila for celebrating the World Pasta Day by donating 500 bowls of nutritious pasta and 500 banana loaves to students, some of whom are Red Cross Youth, at Villamor Air Base Elementary School last October 25, 2023.

“We’ve partnered with hotels, restaurants, bakeries, and food storage facilities to provide food for the most vulnerable, whether during times of disaster or in non-disaster situations. I am grateful to all our partners for helping PRC support our most vulnerable communities,” Gordon said.

Executive Chef Meik Brammer of Marriott said that donating food to the underprivileged through the PRC is among the hotel giant’s means of addressing food wastage. Marriott Hotel is a food donor of the PRC for over 12 years, serving freshly-cooked food to over 20,000 beneficiaries.

Food donations significantly contributed to addressing two of PRC’s key advocacies: food insecurity and child malnutrition, which Gordon reiterated during his discussion at the International Society for Southeast Asian Agricultural Sciences (ISSAAS) conference on November 8 in Manila.

Gordon, during his first term as a senator in 2009, authored the Republic Act No. 9803 (RA9803) or the Food Donation Act of 2009, which aims to address the country’s growing hunger problem and bring dignity back to the most vulnerable simultaneously. Under this law, donors are encouraged to donate food for charitable purposes and to reduce food wastage. Chairman Gordon explained that the donors give untouched food from buffet tables, not leftover food.

PRC’s food coordinator, Ms. Micot Juico, and PRC-Pasay City Chapter staff, Ms. Shara Mae Arceo, facilitated the food donation activity. 

Philippine Red Cross

Born officially in 1947, but with roots that traces back to the revolutionary days, the Philippine Red Cross has truly become the premier humanitarian organization in the country, committed to provide quality life-saving services that protect the life and dignity especially of indigent Filipinos in vulnerable situations.

Address: 37 EDSA corner Boni Avenue, Mandaluyong City 1550
Emergency Hotline: 143
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