Cagayan De Oro – The Philippine Red Cross will provide 1,000 shelters for families displaced by tropical storm Sendong in this city with the 5-hectare land donation of Xavier University to the affected families through Red Cross.
The groundbreaking rites led by PRC Chairman Richard J. Gordon and Xavier University Chairman Elpidio Paras, was held today (December 29, 2011) at the future resettlement site in Xavier compound, barangay Lumbia in Cagayan De Oro.
Also present during the groundbreaking rites were partners in the shelter program including head of delegation Selva Sinnadurai of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Jessie Co, Tony Uy and Rudy Menes of Oro Chamber of Commerce, couple Walter and Annabelle Brown of A. Brown Company, as well as Lumbia Barangay captain Willie Valencia and Misamis Oriental- Cagayan De Oro Red Cross chapter Chairman Antonio Soriano.
Gordon said this is the first effort from private sectors in partnership with the Philippine Red Cross to build homes for families displaced by Sendong.
The Red Cross will build 1,000 shelters initially as soon as the land is ready with basic service facilities and provision for livelihood.
In the meantime, Red Cross will put up tents on the same site for families sheltered in school buildings who have to move out due to the opening of classes in January next year.
Gordon, along with the Movement partners, is now in the city spearheading the New Year's gift giving of more than 10,000 packages for the families still sheltered at various evacuation centers mostly school buildings in this city and in Iligan.
Gordon expressed his concern for families staying at the school buildings who have to move to other places due to the opening of classes first week of January.
The Xavier Lumbia site will serve as one of the resettlement areas for the affected families according to Red Cross.
Gordon has been highlighting in his message to the people, the need to bring back their dignity by transforming from dependency to full recovery, despite the disaster, by providing them with permanent shelters where they could start their life anew.
PRC Secretary General Gwendolyn Pang said, that apart from relief goods and shelters, the Red Cross also provides water equipment that could supply clean drinking water of 160,000 liters for 160,000 people in CDO and 40,000 liters for 40,000 people in Iligan. Pang said a person takes an average of 1 liter of water per day.
PRC as well provides psychosocial support for person traumatized by the unspeakable devastation wrought by Sendong to human life and property in the affected areas.
The Philippine Red Cross works closely with its Movement partners led by IFRC, the International Committee of the Red Cross, Partner National Societies as well as its local corporate partners.
The Red Cross lauded its hundreds of volunteers who have been working without let up since Day 1 of the disaster.