Butuan youth launches relief drive for typhoon victims in Luzon

BUTUAN CITY, Nov. 27 (PIA) -- With thousands of families in Luzon left distressed in the aftermath of typhoons Rolly (Goni) and Ulysses (Vamco), the youth of this city spearheaded various relief drives to aid these families.

Youth members of the Akbayanihan Foundation, a non-profit organization, launched a donation drive called ‘Akbayanihan sa Butuan’, in partnership with local universities and university organizations.

 “We felt the need to spearhead this project because we saw that the Butuanon youth, who are affiliated with other organizations, are active in responding to times of crises. This project is a great opportunity to make use of that attitude towards volunteerism whilst using the youth as a catalyst for change,” said project head Shem Cordova.

Proceeds will go to the victims in the National Capital Region (NCR), particularly in Caloocan, Catanduanes, Bicol region, and Cagayan Valley.

Since its launching on November 12, the relief drive has received 500 boxes of donated clothes, food, and non-food items, and 100 liters of water for the relief packs. The team also launched a fundraising drive, hoping to collect at least PhP10,000 to donate for the victims, which they were able to raise successfully.

According to Cordova, they will be seeking the assistance of the Philippine Air Force to transport the in-kind donations to the typhoon-struck areas.

Gender and disasters

Meanwhile, the Sangguniang Kabataan  (SK) Federation of the city launched a donation drive to create Basic Dignity Kits which contain hygiene products and toiletries for women and children. SK Federation President Cynth Zephanee Nietes said they chose to focus on the unique needs of these sectors, as they are overlooked during crises.

“The intimate needs of women and special needs of children do not vanish even during disasters. In addition to providing them their basic necessities, it is just as important to shed light and provide assistance as well to the needs of these vulnerable groups,” she said.

The kits contain underwear, sanitary napkins, toiletries such as toothbrush, toothpaste, bath soap, and comb, and washing powder.

Donations can be in-kind and in cash. As of November 24, 2020, the youth group has already accumulated PhP 12,705.

'Our youth, our future'

When the whole nation joined hands for the typhoon victims, youth entrepreneurs Angielyn Maregmen, Gemrose Arcenal, and Lindsay Cedro decided to take part and find ways to donate to those affected by the disaster.

With the network they have established through their business called ‘Idol Alley’, where they sell merchandise items mostly for K-Pop fans, at their advantage, they launched a raffle for a cause “80 for a TV”, where participants purchase a raffle ticket for PhP80 to get a chance in winning a 40” television.

“As people who are capable of helping and doing more, we decided to help in ways we can,” said Angielyn Maregmen.

Apart from customers, friends, loved ones, and friends of friends also joined the raffle and since its launch on November 14, their little project is now able to accumulate PhP4,000. Some of the funds collected were in part monetary donations from anonymous individuals.

The young entrepreneurs also accommodate in-kind donations and will be sent to Akbayanihan Sa Butuan.

When asked about their motivator to pursue their initiative, they imparted their belief in the importance of the youth’s actions in the development of not just the community, but of the whole nation.

“It has always been said that the youth is the future and that belief can definitely be manifested in helping our countrymen. Today’s youth is enriched with information and experiences, which makes them more suitable agents of change. I also believe that how we use that privilege helps determine the fate of this nation,” Maregmen said.

Arcenal furthered that the change this nation needs lies in the hands of the youth.

“By taking part in causes, not only are we igniting hope for these people but also catalyze change. Our capability to help is highly important in generating the change we’ve always yearned for. Taking action guarantees progress, which is what our country truly needs,” she said.

Donations are still welcomed by the said groups. To take part in the relief drive of the Akbayanihan Foundation, cash donations can be sent via GCash through 0967-804-3296 (Shem Cordova); via bank deposit through the BPI account number of Jade S. Ampong, 8689170464; or Paypal, paypal.me/jadeampong. For queries, contact Imi Espina, 0956-245-4534, or  Shem Cordova, 0930-952-3121, or email them at akbayanyouthbxu@gmail.com.

To donate to the SK Federation’s cause, cash donations may be sent via GCash through 0917-122-7764 (Cynth Zephanee 2) and in-kind donations may be dropped off or delivered to New SP Building, City Hall Complex, J. P. Rosales Ave., Brgy. Doongan, Butuan City. For queries, contact 0930-360-3909/0910-891-0149/0977-110-8315, the SK Federation Hotline, 0951-881-3555, and/or the SK Federation Landline, 817-8480.

To learn more about the mechanics of the ’80 for a TV’ raffle, visit bit.ly/80ForATV. Cash donations may also be sent via GCash, 0956-764-3144 (Lindsay Cedro), or via Paypal, PayPal.me/Idolalley. (DMNR/PIA-Caraga)

Source: Philippines Information Agency (pia.gov.ph)

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