Initiatives and Bayanihan help community recover after Typhoon Yolanda PDF Print E-mail
News Features - Success Stories
Written by 4Ps Social Marketing Unit   
Friday, 14 February 2014 11:34

To say that Barangay Balao, Burauen, Leyte was badly hit by typhoon Yolanda is an understatement. The Balao Bridge that used to link the barangay to other communities was wrecked and roads are painted with “HELP, NO FOOD”. They give clues to the previous and present obstacles endured by many upland settlers of Burauen.


But while many of the residents of the barangay try to cope with the effects of the typhoon, they did not lose hope in getting back on their feet again. Their initiatives and bayanihan efforts have helped in cleaning up their neighborhood. Working together demonstrates their willingness to regain their lives, relive their dreams and nurture the Filipino spirit.


Day by day survival


The Chairman of Brgy. Balao led in mobilizing a team to help clear the road from fallen trees and debris. They were also able to get support and assistance from different barangays to fix Balau bridge using logs that can support a motorcycle. The makeshift bridge was for the immediate transport of relief goods from the town to their place.


“Pagkaumaga na pagkaumaga po pagkaalis ng bagyo, nagpunta na po ang aming kapitan kasama kaming ibang konsehal sa bayan para kunin ang mga relief goods, lahat ng may habal ay nakiisa para mas mapabilis ang pagkuha ng relief goods sa bayan, kung hindi po ay gutom po ang aabutin ng mga tao dito. (That early morning after Typhoon Yolanda, the Chairman, along with some of the councilors, went to town to gather the relief goods. All those with motorcycles cooperated to expedite the transfer of goods.),” said Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program beneficiary Margie Macapanas on how the relief goods from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reached their barangay.


The townsfolk also found ways to gather food once the skies cleared up. Their measly budget from a good harvest as well as the cash grants from DSWD Pantawid Pamilya enabled them to buy fish and meat at the town’s market. “Nakakabili lang naman po kami ng ulam katulad ng isda at karne kapag nakatanggap po kami ng cash grants mula sa Pantawid o pag maganda ang ani ng kopra” (We are only able to buy fish and meat when we are receive cash grants from Pantawid or if we have good harvest.) Margie shared.


The officials of Barangay Balao have also been very responsive in coordinating with the municipal government of Burauen to ensure the prompt pick-up and delivery of relief goods from DSWD for upland barangays.


DSWD assistance


Around 2,700 household beneficiaries of Pantawid Pamilya in Municipality of Burauen received their cash grants last December 23.DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman said that the grant was expected to help these families get back on their feet after they were devastated by the super typhoon Yolanda.

“We are sensitive with the needs of our partner-beneficiaries and we truly understand the difficulty they are having right now that is why we have doubled time to ensure that our partner-beneficiaries received their grants the soonest”, Soliman added.

Margie is one of the beneficiaries who received their cash grants on the said payout. World Food Programme (WFP) has partnered with Pantawid Pamilya to provide additional cash assistance (Php 2,600.00) and 10-kg of rice.

With the extent of damage brought by the typhoon to their land and crops, Margie remains optimistic and excited with the new year ahead. Excited po ako sa papasok na taon, iniisip ko nalang na bago ang lahat, bagong buhay. Uunahin ko lang ang Diyos at sigurado makakabangon ako. Sa ngayon ang mahalaga lang ay matulungan ko ang mga bata na magkasigla sa pagpasok kasi nawalan sila ng gana pumasok nung nasira ang school nila, nawala ang mga gamit nila pang eskwela at pati mga damit nila. Kaya naman tuwang tuwa ako na malaman na makakatanggap kami ng cash grants mula sa Pantawid at may dagdag pa. Gagamitin ko to para mabigyang sigla ulit ang mga anak ko na mag-aral ulit pagpasok ng Enero.” (I am excited for the coming year, I always think that it is a new start, new lives. I know that I can stand tall again if I put God first. What’s important today is to encourage my children to study again because they were disheartened when they saw their school ruined by the typhoon and their school supplies lost. I am really delighted to know that we are receiving cash grants from Pantawid Pamilya. I will maximize it to help my kids on their schooling this coming January.),” Margie said. #

Department of Social Welfare and Development
Constitution Hills, Batasan Complex
Quezon City, Philippines 1126
(632) 931 8101 to 931 8107