Philippine Red Cross to the rescue as number of quake-affected schools in Mindanao rise
The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) will send Temporary Learning Spaces (TLS) to areas affected by the series of earthquakes particularly in two of the hardest-hit provinces, North Cotabato and Davao del Sur.
“This mission will be headed by Red Cross Youth (RCY) staff to help thousands of displaced students to ensure the continuity of education after their schools were damaged by temblors while other learning facilities are now being utilized as temporary evacuation centers,” PRC Chairman Richard Gordon said.
A total of 10 TLS will be initially deployed or 5 tents each for North Cotabato and Davao del Sur. Each tent can accommodate 40 to 50 students. These tents are expected to arrive in their designated locations by Monday, November 18.
“A lot of school buildings aren’t safe yet after they sustained damages and large cracks due to strong aftershocks since October 16. Aside from food, medicine and water, more children are also in need of education which is their right,” Gordon added.
Almost a month after the series of earthquakes hit several parts of Mindanao, over 1,000 schools were damaged based on data provided by the Department of Education (DEPED).
Classes at all levels in three regions – Regions 11, 12 and BARMM – remain suspended.
Gordon also extended his gratitude to PRC’s operation partners and donors – the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the Embassy of Republic of Korea, San Miguel Food Corporation, Nickel Asia Corporation, Filminera Resources Corporation, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles, Thome Ship Management (TSM) Group and Ramon Tulfo Good Samaritan Foundation Incorporated.
As of November 13, PRC has mobilized 569 volunteers, staff and Red Cross Youth, providing first aid to 81 individuals in 8 First Aid stations in Kidapawan City, Davao del Sur and General Santos City, distributing food items to 1,122 families in Davao Del Sur and North Cotabato.
Eighteen temporary shower facilities were installed in the Municipality of Magsaysay, Davao del Sur which are now being utilized by the affected families as part of PRC’s commitment to promote hygiene and sanitation whenever a calamity or disaster hits.
A total of 1,004,208 liters of water were distributed by PRC – Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion (WASH) to 5,690 families or 22,097 individuals in Davao del Sur and North Cotabato. The WASH unit also conducted hygiene promotion to 6,163 individuals, installed 40 portable toilets, and established 19 water collecting points also in Davao del Sur and North Cotabato.
Gordon gave his assurance that the PRC will install an additional 20 portalets especially in remote areas and will setup Basic Health Care Units to address health problems in Kidapawan City and other affected areas.
PRC distributed hot meals to 9,482 families in North Cotabato (6,860) and Davao Del Sur (2,622), administered psychosocial support to 3,338 individuals including child friendly spaces to 1,198 individuals in North Cotabato, South Cotabato, Davao Del Sur, General Santos and Sultan Kudarat.
PRC also deployed 20 water bladders from General Santos-Saranggani, Davao City, Leyte, Cebu, Agusan del Sur; 5 water tankers and 3 water treatment units to North Cotabato and Davao del Sur; 8 ambulances from National Headquarters, South Cotabato, North Cotabato, Davao del Sur and Zamboanga Del Norte chapters and 2 additional mobile kitchens from Bacolod and Iloilo.
The PRC will create a community kitchen kiosk per evacuation center so that evacuees will not need to cook inside their tents, thereby avoiding a fire hazard.
Since October 16, more than 30,687 families or 153,435 individuals in 15 municipalities and cities, in 7 provinces have been affected by the series of earthquakes.
More than 10,684 families or 42,736 individuals are taking temporary shelter in 64 evacuation centers, 39 in Davao del Sur (5,980 families or 23,920 individuals) and 25 in North Cotabato (4,766 families or 18,816 individuals).
PRC uses resources provided by generous donors for these activities. The public can help PRC replenish these resources by donating through the following avenues:
Peso Savings: 00-453-0190938
Dollar Savings: 10-453-0039482
Swift Code: BNORPHMM
Peso Savings: 4991-0036-52
Swift Code: BOPIPHMM
Peso Savings: 151-7-151524342
Dollar Savings: 151-2-151002182
Swift Code: MBTCPHMM