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No less than the current Regional Director of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) for the Asia Pacific, Alexander Matheou, exclaimed that the entire federation and the Philippines is extremely fortunate to have the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and its Chairman, Richard J. Gordon to lead the organization. Matheou said this during TY Odette Recovery Operations in the islands of Siargao and Dinagat, and in Surigao Del Norte that took place last Thursday, September 15, 2022.

“You know we (the Federation) are very lucky, you are very lucky, in the Philippines, you have one of the best Red Cross Societies in the whole world, and you have one of the best Red Cross Leaders in the whole world, Chairman Richard Gordon,” said Matheou as he spoke in front of the assistance beneficiaries in the island of Siargao. 

Matheou said this after witnessing firsthand how PRC Chairman molded and led the entire PH Red Cross to efficiently and effectively bring much-needed assistance to the most vulnerable communities not only those who are affected by Typhoon Odette, but also other disasters that have struck the country in the last 20 years.

The Philippine Red Cross (PRC), in partnership with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and other partner national societies, provided cash and emergency shelter assistance to 1,803 families in San Benito municipality, Siargao Island; Surigao City; and Basilisa municipality, Dinagat Islands amounting to Php 14 Million in these provinces alone.

This is part of the more than P425 million humanitarian assistance allocated to families devastated by Typhoon Odette last December. Each families received Php 5,000.00 pesos to help them in their livelihood. Families who received emergency shelter assistance got Php 9,600.00 worth of shelter took kits, including heavy-duty corrugated galvanized iron sheets.

Matheou’s hailing of the PRC and Chairman Gordon’s leadership is not the first from the global movement. 

In his trip to Marawi City last June of 2019, Peter Maurer, the President of the International Committee of Red Cross hailed Chairman Gordon for upholding humanitarian principles. Maurer extolled Red Gordon to promote the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement’s works and considers Gordon as a “reputational pride” in the international movement.

Also last June 2019, during his visit to the Philippines, the President of the IFRC, Francesco Rocca expressed his gratitude to the PRC Chairman and the PRC volunteers. Rocca highlighted PRC’s dedicated work and how it continues to inspire across borders.

Rocca also hailed the PRC last August of this year, during the Northern Luzon Earthquake, where PRC staff and volunteers immediately responded to areas affected by the magnitude this year.

“Leadership is action, not a position. I have instilled this in the thousands of staff and volunteers across our country. The PRC will always be there for the most vulnerable in our society, before, during, and even months and years after a disaster, we will continue to be there. Our mantra is ethos, Volunteers + Logistics + Information Technology equals to a Philippine Red Cross that is Always First, Always Ready, and Always There”, said PRC Chairman Gordon.

Bohol and Cebu receives assistance from PRC 8 months after TY Odette

TRed Cross continues to help TY Odette-affected communities in Bohol, Cebu to get humanitarian assistance

More than eight months after Typhoon Odette (international name: Rai) struck the Philippines, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), in partnership with the American Red Cross and International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), provided cash and emergency shelter assistance to 4,856 families from 19 barangays in Bohol, Cebu province, and Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu today, September 6.

Six hundred seven families received Php5,000.00 cash assistance, while 4,249 families were provided CGI (corrugated galvanized iron) sheets and shelter tool kits worth Php9,600.00. The total value of humanitarian aid distributed amounted to Php43.825 million. Today’s distribution is part of the more than Php455 million humanitarian and development assistance the PRC has allocated to families affected by Typhoon Odette and other calamities that affected Mindanao and Visayas from December 2021 to September 2022.

“Katulad ng sinabi ko sa simula ng 2022, hindi natin kakalimutan ang Typhoon Odette. Kaya nandito pa rin ang Red Cross para sa mga pamilyang lubos na naapektuhan, hanggang sila ay makabawi mula sa mga epekto ng Odette. Sabi nga ng Philippine Red Cross hymn, ‘When the world no longer watches, we do what must be done,’” Gordon emphasized.

Other partners of the PRC in these activities are the German Red Cross, the Spanish Red Cross, and the European Union. PRC’s cash, emergency shelter, and livelihood assistance distribution also covers Southern Leyte, Leyte, Palawan, Negros Oriental, Negros Occidental, Dinagat Islands, Siargao, Surigao del Norte, Maguindanao, and Lanao del Sur.

Photo Hilongos TY Odette2 08-25-22

Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Chairman and CEO Richard J. Gordon reports that from December 2021 to September 2022, the PRC will have distributed more than Php455 million in humanitarian and development aid to Visayas and Mindanao. The figure represents only the cost of the humanitarian organization’s TY Odette response, TD Agaton response, and Peace and Development Project in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (PDBARMM). It does not include PRC’s other response operations and development projects in Visayas and Mindanao, such as its Covid-19 response.

“Mula noong bumagsak ang bagyong Odette noong December 2021, hanggang sa darating na September, tayo ay makakapamahagi na ng Php455 million na tulong sa Mindanao at Visayas. Namigay kami ng shelter assistance, hot meals, tubig, food and non-food items, psychological support, cash, at iba pa. At mula ngayong linggo, mamimigay ulit kami ng cash, shelter, at livelihood assistance,” Gordon shared.       

In partnership with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the German Red Cross, the Spanish Red Cross, and European Union, PRC kicked off yesterday, August 24, its response, recovery, and development project distribution activities that will last until the third week of September.

Yesterday, the PRC provided cash and emergency shelter assistance to more than 400 families affected by Typhoon Odette in San Francisco and Pintuyan towns in Southern Leyte. Each family received Php5,000.00, CGI (corrugated galvanized iron) sheets, and shelter tool kits. The humanitarian aid distribution makes a total of more than 6,000 Odette-affected families in Southern Leyte who have received cash and emergency shelter assistance from the PRC since the typhoon made landfall on December 16, 2021.

The PRC team also went to Hilongos City yesterday and gave CGI sheets and shelter tool kits to 400 Odette-affected families. Earlier in the year, in March 2022, PRC granted cash assistance to 491 families in Hilongos.

In his message to the people of Southern Leyte, via Zoom, Gordon explained that other countries help the Philippines because the PRC also helps them. He added that the Filipinos have dignity and they receive help not because they are pitiful, but because they help themselves. “Masarap tulungan ang tumutulong sa sarili,” Gordon explained. “Kapag may mga ganyan [referring to disasters and emergencies], nag-a-appeal ako, nag-a-appeal po and Red Cross n’yo, at tumutulong ang iba’t-ibang bansa,” Gordon added.

PRC’s volunteers and staff then proceeded to Baybay City and provided cash assistance to 587 families severely affected by Tropical Depression Agaton, which caused heavy flooding and landslides in Baybay in April this year.

IFRC’s Head of Delegation in the Philippines, Alberto Bocanegra, praised the PRC via Zoom for its response to people affected by Odette and Agaton. “We are super proud of the work of the Philippine Red Cross, one of the most prominent National Societies worldwide — and of course the leadership of Chairman Gordon and Secretary General Elizabeth Zavalla,” he said.

PRC’s cash, emergency shelter, and livelihood assistance distribution from August 24 to September 8 will also cover Palawan, Negros Oriental, Negros Occidental, Cebu, Bohol, Dinagat Islands, Siargao, Surigao del Norte, Maguindanao, and Lanao del Sur.

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.

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Last July 27, a magnitude 7 earthquake damaged 868 houses (857 partially and 11 totally) and affected 1,748,258 individuals in Abra, Ilocos Sur, Kalinga, Mt. Province, Benguet, and La Union. 1,222 families and 5,799 individuals have sought shelter in 12 evacuation centers. And they need your help.

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