MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Secretary-General, Dr. Gwen Pang discussed the organization’s climate actions and humanitarian responses to disasters aggravated by climate change during the International Women Empowerment Assembly: Peace and Sustainable Development of the International Council of Women on November 6.
Dr. Pang began her discourse by referring to climate change as a threat multiplier that can exacerbate existing conflicts and potentially ignite new ones. “By addressing climate change, we are actively contributing in promoting peace and sustainability,” she said.
The discourse focused on the ways the PRC addresses both the effects and root causes of climate change.
“We incorporate climate change in our training, capacity-building programs, and educational materials to raise awareness. We invest in nature-based solutions, and intensify our efforts in waste management and circular economy,” she said.
The PRC also has climate-resilient development practices, such as Early Warning and Early Action Protocols, and community-based disaster risk reduction and disaster preparedness to help Filipino communities affected by natural hazards intensified by climate change.
“Numerous climate change-induced hazards traverse the Philippines in a year. Before communities can recover, another disaster will come and exacerbate their situation. Our early warning and action systems help Filipinos strengthen their houses, evacuate livestocks, relocate small businesses, and harvest their crops days early prior to impact of hazards,” Dr. Pang highlighted.
The Secretary-General concluded her discussion by encouraging all women leaders at the aforementioned conference to devise action points and integrate climate change in local and national policies.
This year, Dr. Pang represented the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies at the UN High-Level Meeting of the Midterm Review for the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction (SFDRR) in New York. The PRC also signed an agreement with the Climate Change Commission to intensify the country’s climate change adaptation and mitigation programs.
After receiving reports from the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Operations Center, PRC Cagayan de Oro Chapter immediately responded to stranded passengers of a Cebu-bound ship that tilted due to strong winds and heavy waves shortly after leaving the port of CDO on November 12. The vessel was operated by Cokaliong Shipping Lines.
Soon after all the passengers safely disembarked from the ship at the port of CDO, the PRC’s Welfare Services Team arrived. Volunteers from PRC CDO Chapter distributed hot meals (arroz caldo) to 125 passengers and food packs to 129 passengers who were shaken by the incident. Seven (7) passengers received medical attention, one of whom had a sprained ankle, and two (2) passengers received psychological first aid from PRC’s first aid and welfare stations.
PRC Chairman Dick Gordon directed the deployment of PRC’s ambulance team in Macabalan Port to provide pre-hospital treatment to passengers who may need it.
PRC’s OpCen also coordinated with the Philippine Coast Guard. Stranded passengers are currently housed in the PPA passenger amenity building, awaiting instructions regarding the vessel’s departure or clearance.
On October 7, the PRC dispatched two ambulance units to assist in the disembarkation of passengers from a cargo vessel still operated by Cokaliong Shipping Lines. The vessel was en route to Samar when a chemical leak on board took place.
Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Chairman and CEO Dick Gordon and Secretary General Dr. Gwen Pang expressed their gratitude to Tessa Prieto and Kaye Tinga, organizers of the Red Charity Gala, for choosing the PRC once again as one of the beneficiaries of the show’s proceeds. The Red Charity Gala is one of the most awaited annual fashion and fundraising events in the Philippines.
“We are always grateful for the support of the Red Charity Gala, which is an opportunity for its followers to appreciate fashion and donate to meaningful causes at the same time. Thank you to Tess and Kaye, for bringing together people who care not just for fashion but also for those who need help the most,” said Gordon.
The Red Charity Gala is named after the Red Cross, which is historically the primary beneficiary of the fashion and fundraising event. The 2023 Red Charity Gala was held at The Peninsula Manila, in Makati City, on 8 October 2023. Gordon and Pang represented the PRC in the event. This year’s gala was the 12th show. It featured celebrity fashion designer Ivarluski “Ivar” Aseron. The event was graced by the Philippines’ First Lady, Marie Louise “Liza” Araneta Marcos.
“We are thankful of course to the Red Charity Gala for supporting the Philippine Red Cross. They can be assured that the donation will reach our kababayans who are in situations of disasters and emergencies,” Pang added.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) administered 15,249 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters in Marawi City through the PRC Mobile Bakuna Team, fully inoculating 7,657 persons from 2021 to 2022. The PRC Bakuna Team supports the city government’s vaccination efforts at the City Hall Gym in Barangay Bangon, Marawi City.
PRC Chairman and CEO Richard J. Gordon encouraged Filipinos again to get vaccinated and those who are qualified to have the first or second booster shots to get them. “When the world no longer watches, the Philippine Red Cross does what must be done. We will support the local governments in the fight against Covid-19, until our country is safe from the threat of the pandemic,” Chairman Gordon said.
Other places in Mindanao where PRC conducts Covid-19 vaccination and boosting are Agusan del Norte, Bukidnon, Cotabato City, Davao City, General Santos City, Gingoog City, Iligan City, Maguindanao, Misamis Oriental, Sarangani, Surigao del Norte, Sultan Kudarat, and Zamboanga City. To date, 120 vaccinators have been mobilized and one Bakuna Bus has been deployed in Mindanao.
The Covid-19 vaccinations are part of PRC’s Covid-19 response across the country. As of 17 November 2022, PRC has administered 1,252,865 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters in the whole country, fully vaccinating 377,388 persons.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) continues to intensify its actions against Covid-19. As of date, the 20 PRC Bakuna Buses, since their deployment in 2021, have administered a total of 488, 201 Covid-19 vaccines and boosters in 151 cities and municipalities across the country. Aside from targeting vulnerable populations (i.e., elderly, students, etc.), the Bakuna buses also aim to deliver vaccine services to workers who are less likely to get vaccinated because of work-related reasons (e.g. schedules).
“Makakaasa ang ating mga kababayan na mananatiling kasangga ng mg lokal na komunidad ang Philippine Red Cross sa pagsugpo sa pandemya. Patuloy naming ilalapit ang aming serbisyo at bakuna sa pamamagitan ng Bakuna Centers at Bakuna Buses sa ating mga kababayan na nasa vulnerable communities,” PRC Chairman and CEO Richard J. Gordon said.
The PRC “Bakuna” Buses, a fleet of buses equipped with a vaccine administration area and supplies, are designed to alleviate the crisis in the accessibility of Covid-19 vaccinations to people in vulnerable situations.
The Bakuna Buses recently visited Hospicio De San Jose, Philippine General Hospital, Far Eastern University, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) Navotas, Laguna, and Zamboanga, and difficult-to-reach areas in Mindanao. To date, with the assistance of UBE Express, Victory Liner, Ceres Liner, and PRC-owned buses, the PRC “Bakuna” buses have completed a total of 1,220 mobilization trips across the country.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) has administered 22,021 doses of Covid-19 vaccines in Lapu-Lapu City and Cordova town, in Cebu province, through the PRC Mobile Bakuna Team, fully inoculating 5,630 persons.
Lapu-Lapu is currently under Covid-19 alert level 1, while Cordova is on alert level 2. Other PRC vaccination sites in Visayas are in Bohol, Capiz, Negros Occidental, Aklan, Bogo, Iloilo City, Cebu City, Cebu province, and Roxas City.
The vaccinations are part of the PRC’s Covid-19 response across the country. As of June 9, 2022, PRC has administered 1,190,940 doses of Covid-19 vaccines, including boosters in the whole country, fully vaccinating 372,963 persons.
PRC Chairman and CEO Richard J. Gordon encouraged Filipinos again to get vaccinated and those who are qualified to have the first or second booster shots to get them. “Ang Philippine Red Cross ay laging handa at laging nandyan, hanggang sa maging ligtas ang mga Pilipino sa banta ng Covid-19,” Chairman Gordon said.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Misamis Oriental-Cagayan De Oro Chapter, in partnership with the city government of Cagayan de Oro, has administered 45,888 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters from 2021 to 2022 through the PRC Bakuna Teams, fully vaccinating at least 4,161 persons as of May 29, 2022. The Bakuna Teams started tracking the number of those fully vaccinated only in February 2022.
Cagayan de Oro City is currently under Covid-19 alert level 1, which means all interzonal and intrazonal travels and all outdoor activities are allowed, subject to the local government’s guidelines. The Philippines has been open to fully vaccinated foreign tourists from all countries since April 1, 2022.
The PRC Bakuna Teams, deployed in SM Downtown Quantum, also supports one Bakuna Center in Cagayan de Oro City. Other PRC vaccination sites in Mindanao include Tawi-Tawi, Cotabato City-Maguindanao, Sulu, Davao del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Sultan Kudarat, Marawi City, and Zamboanga City.
The vaccinations are part of the PRC’s Covid-19 response across the country. As of May 29, 2022, PRC has administered 1,185,628 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters in the whole country, with at least 372,780 persons fully vaccinated.
PRC Chairman and CEO Richard J. Gordon encourages those who have not been vaccinated and those who are qualified to have the first or second booster shots to get the shots, especially because the Department of Health has announced that Omicron subvariants have been detected in the country. “When the world no longer watches, we do what must be done. Mananatiling nandito ang Philippine Red Cross, handang umaksyon anuman ang magiging sitwasyon ng bansa laban sa Covid-19,” Chairman Gordon said.
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC), in partnership with local governments, has administered more than 9,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters in Aklan from 2021 to 2022 through the PRC Bakuna Bus, fully vaccinating 4,358 persons as of May 24, 2022. Included in the areas visited by PRC’s Bakuna Bus are the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology and Aklan Rehabilitation Center. Other PRC vaccination sites in Visayas include Bohol, Capiz, Negros, Bogo, and Roxas City.
The vaccinations are part of the PRC’s Covid-19 response across the country. As of May 25, 2022, PRC has administered 1,181,858 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters in the whole country, with 372,553 persons fully vaccinated.
Aklan is currently under Covid-19 alert level 1, which means all interzonal and intrazonal travels and all outdoor activities are allowed, subject to the local government’s guidelines. The Philippines has been open to fully vaccinated foreign tourists from all countries since April 1, 2022.
PRC Chairman and CEO Richard J. Gordon continues to encourage those who have not been vaccinated and those who are qualified to have the first or second booster shots to get the shots. “Hindi pa tapos ang laban natin sa Covid-19. Kagaya nang dati, ang Philippine Red Cross ay mananatiling nandyan para sa ating mga kababayan sa matagal na panahon, hanggang sa tayo ay maging ligtas sa peligro ng Covid-19,” Chairman Gordon said.
To continue its COVID-19 vaccination program and encourage more people to get vaccinated, the Philippine Red Cross (PRC), through its Bakuna Bus, returned to Malabon City in Barangay Longos on May 20.
Over 100 patients, including senior citizens and immunocompromised, were able to receive their 1st booster shots. They were also advised to monitor their health conditions in preparation for their 2nd booster shots. The Department of Health issued an announcement on May 18 that senior citizens and the immunocompromised can join health workers in availing of the second booster shot.
“Nagbabalik ang Red Cross dito sa Malabon upang ipagpatuloy ang ating vaccination program. Ang ating Bakuna Bus ay handang sumuong sa mga liblib na lugar upang mas mahikayat natin ang ating mga kababayan na magpabakuna. Walang maiiwan sa ating laban kontra COVID-19,” PRC Chairman and CEO Richard Gordon said.
Providing a mobile COVID-19 vaccination program, the Bakuna Bus is strategically designed with facilities in compliance with the vaccine administration protocols, COVID-19 vaccines and other supplies, and space for volunteers and staff. With this interior, the PRC delivers a more efficient service to achieve herd immunity amid the pandemic, fulfilling its mandate to assist the government in its COVID-19 efforts.
To date, the PRC has administered 1,178,776 vaccination doses with 20 Bakuna Buses deployed in different areas in the Philippines.
In support of the Department of Health’s announcement on May 18, 2022, giving the green light for the administration of second Covid-19 vaccine booster shots, the Philippine Red Cross Bakuna Centers are open to those who are qualified for the booster shots.
The Department of Health explained that the second booster shot is a defense of health workers and the highly vulnerable seniors. It also reiterated that the shots are safe, effective, and free of charge.
Qualified persons — those in A1 category, Workers in Frontline Health Services, and A2, Senior Citizens, who had their first booster shot four months ago — may walk in at a Philippine Red Cross Bakuna Center to have their second booster. There is no need for an appointment.
Those who plan to avail of the second booster shot must bring their vaccination card showing the date of the first booster dose and any government-issued ID.
The Philippine Red Cross Chairman and CEO, Senator Richard J. Gordon, encouraged those who are qualified to get the jab to visit a Red Cross vaccination center. “Hinihikayat ko ang ating mga kababayan na frontline healthcare workers at senior citizens na fully vaccinated at may first booster shot na kunin na ang second booster shot para sa kanilang proteksyon,” Chairman Gordon said.
The Philippine Red Cross’ vaccination efforts are part of its mandate as an auxiliary to the government in its humanitarian tasks. The Philippine Red Cross started administering Covid-19 vaccines in March 2021. As of May 19, 2022, it has administered 1,176,151 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and boosters, of which 92,712 are boosters. It has fully vaccinated 372,352 individuals.