Bong Go continues to help Filipinos recovering from crisis situations

Sends aid to families displaced by Davao City fire incident

The Office of Senator Christopher “Bong” Go on Thursday, March 25, extended additional aid to the residents of the Leon Garcia community in Agdao, Davao City after their houses were damaged during a fire which spread through the area late last year.

“Mga kababayan ko, huwag po tayong mag-alala dahil hindi kayo pababayaan ng gobyerno. Mag-cooperate lang tayo, magtulungan at magbayanihan. Malalampasan rin natin ang lahat ng pagsubok na ating hinaharap sa panahong ito,” Go said in a video message.

“Handa kami ni Presidente Rodrigo Duterte, Mayor Sara, Vice Mayor Baste, Congressman Paolo Duterte at Congressman Vincent Garcia na magserbisyo sa inyo sa abot ng aming makakaya,” he continued.

A total of 66 beneficiary families were given meals, food and medicine packs, vitamins, medical-grade masks, and face shields during an activity conducted by the Senator’s team at the Leon Garcia Sr. National High School.

Selected recipients were provided new shoes or bicycles. Others were given computer tablets to help their children participate in the classes being carried out under the blended learning approach.

As part of ongoing government efforts to deliver assistance to communities recovering from crisis situations, personnel from the National Housing Authority were also present to assess households in need of financial support to repair their damaged houses.

The Departments of Health, and Social Welfare and Development had previously distributed hygiene kits with medicines as well as cash assistance and food packs, respectively.

“Malaki ang aking pasasalamat dahil nakatanggap ako ng bicycle at ng iba’t iba pang assistance. Salamat talaga, Senator Bong, para sa tulong ninyo sa aming mga nasunugan!” said Cesar Agabon.

“Nagpapasalamat rin kami sa NHA dahil sa wakas makakapagpatayo na kami ng aming mga bahay! Maraming salamat rin kay Senador para sa dinala niyang tulong dito sa aming lugar,” added Amelita Malata.

As vice-chair of the Senate Committee on Public Order, Go committed to push for the enactment of a measure which will enhance the response capabilities of the Bureau of Fire Protection and help minimize the risk of similar accidents from reoccurring.

Senate Bill No. 1832, a bill he authored and co-sponsored, directs the BFP to implement a modernization program to facilitate the acquisition of new fire equipment, provision of specialized fire training, and hiring of more firefighters. It will also establish Fire Protection Services and rescue hotlines as well as mandate monthly fire prevention information drives in every local government unit.

SBN 1832 was passed on the third and final reading by the Senate last March 8.

“Kaya ko isinusulong ‘yung Fire Modernization [bill] para ma-modernize ang mga kagamitan ng ating mga bumbero. May information at education drives din ang nasabing bill kung saan tuturuan ang mga residente kung ano ang gagawin para makaiwas sa sunog,” explained Go.

“Bukod sa pagiging laging handa, dapat maging proactive rin tayo kung papaano maiiwasan ang mga ganitong insidente,” he added.

The Senator, as the Chair of the Senate Committee on Health, also encouraged everyone to prioritize their health while diligently following the government-issued protocols against COVID-19.

He offered to assist any beneficiary who cannot access medical care, and encouraged them to seek further aid from the government by visiting the Malasakit Center at the Southern Philippines Medical Center.

The center is a one-stop shop which provides patients quick access to the medical assistance programs offered by the DOH, DSWD, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

The Senator went on to express his gratitude to the local officials for their efforts to serve and support the needs of the affected residents. He specifically thanked Leon Garcia Punong Barangay Lita Empis; Kagawad Tommy Rica, Citiaco Jorolan, Rowena Balbes, and Arturo Yu; Sangguniang Kabataan Chair Arian Sagusara; and NHA Regional Manager Zenaida Cabiles.

“Huwag kayong magpasalamat sa amin ni Pangulo Duterte dahil trabaho namin ang magserbisyo sa inyo. Kami ang dapat magpasalamat dahil binigyan n’yo kami ng pagkakataon para manilbihan. Makakaasa kayo na hindi namin sasayangin ang pagkakataon na ito,” pledged Go.

The distribution activity was conducted in batches to comply with minimum health standards in order to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Necessary health protocols were also in place throughout the activity.

Bong Go’s office holds relief activities in North Cotabato

Gives aid to hundreds of struggling market vendors

In support of small businesses affected by the COVID-19 crisis, the Office of Senator Christopher “Bong” Go recently began a series of relief activities for the market vendors in Kidapawan City, North Cotabato who are struggling to stay afloat as they continue to serve as an important source of fresh, healthy and affordable food especially for ordinary Filipinos.

The first batches were held on March 17 and 18 at the Kidapawan City Pilot Elementary School covered court where a total of 438 market vendors were given meals, food packs, vitamins, medical-grade masks, and face shields by the Senator’s team.

“Mga kababayan, tandaan po natin na ang pag-iingat at kooperasyon ninyo, ang inyong pagmamalasakit sa kapwa, ay malaking parte ng ating bayanihan efforts upang malampasan ang pagsubok na ito,” Go began in a video message.

“Magpalakas tayo ng katawan at resistensya at sumunod rin tayo sa gobyerno. Gamitin natin ang mga masks, mag-social distancing at maghugas ng kamay dahil delikado pa ang panahon ngayon,” he continued.

Selected beneficiaries were also given new shoes while those facing difficulties in their daily commute received bicycles. Others were provided computer tablets to help their children with their educational activities under the blended learning approach.

Meanwhile, personnel from the DSWD also distributed cash assistance as part of a holistic set of interventions by the government for communities in crisis. The DOH gave away additional face masks while the Department of Agriculture brought seed supplies to encourage everyone to grow their own vegetables.

On the other hand, the Departments of Labor and Employment, and Trade and Industry assessed vendors seeking alternative employment and livelihood options, respectively. The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority, in turn, profiled potential candidates for their scholarship grant program.

“Nagpapasalamat ako ng lubos kay Senador Bong at kay Presidente Duterte para sa mga ibinigay nilang tulong sa aming mga negosyante. Malaki ang hirap namin noong nagsarado ang aming mga tindahan. Talagang wala kaming income kaya natutuwa kami na nabigyan kami kahit kaunti man lang na tulong. Malaking bagay na ‘to sa amin. Mabuhay tayong lahat!” said Anna Evangelista, a market vendor from Barangay Lanao.

Go also offered his help to beneficiaries or their family members who need medical care. He advised them to visit their nearest Malasakit Center to access medical assistance from the government.

Malasakit Centers have been established at the Davao del Sur Provincial Hospital in Digos City; Sultan Kudarat Provincial Hospital in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat; Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao City; and at other hospitals throughout the country.

Wrapping up his message, the Senator thanked Mayor Joseph Evangelista; Vice Mayor Jivy Roe Bombeo; and Councilors Melvin Lamatan, Marittess Malaluan, Gregoria Lonzaga, Ruby Padilla-Sison, Carlo Agamon, Airene Pagal, Aljo Dizon, Lauro Taynan Jr., Junares Amador, and Peter Salac for their efforts to address the needs of their constituents affected by the pandemic.

He also acknowledged Poblacion Punong Barangay Arnold Sumbling, Magsaysay Punong Barangay Julio Labinghisa, Sudapin Punong Barangay Jon Karl Sibug, and Balindog Punong Barangay Angelo Saniel for their ongoing support.

“Huwag kayong mag-alala dahil unti-unti nang dumadating ang mga bakuna. Pagkatapos ng mga medical frontliners, uunahin namin ni Pangulong [Rodrigo] Duterte ang lahat ng mga nangangailangan, gaya ng mga market vendors,” assured Go.

“Ngayon kung may maitutulong pa kami, sabihan niyo lang ang aking opisina at sa abot ng aming makakaya, tutulungan namin kayo. Walang tulog ang aming serbisyo lalo na ngayon sa panahong pinaka-nangangailangan ang mga Pilipino,” he added.

Go will also personally visit Kidapawan City this Saturday, March 20 to provide more aid to another set of beneficiaries.

Bong Go’s office conducts two-day relief activities in Surigao del Sur

Assists over a thousand typhoon victims to help them recover and build back better

Four weeks after Typhoon Auring, an outreach team of Senator Christopher “Bong” Go delivered much-needed additional aid to Bayabas and Cortes in Surigao del Sur after many residents were still struggling with access to food, water, power or shelter, following the devastation of the storm.

Activities were held at the Solomon Lozada National High School in Bayabas and Cortes municipal gym on Wednesday, March 17, during which the team handed out meals, food and medicine packs, medical-grade masks, and face shields to a total of 1,517 typhoon victims.

Selected beneficiaries were given bicycles for their daily commute while others received new pairs of shoes. Some recipients were provided computer tablets so their children can study more effectively from home while schools remain closed.

“Mga kababayan ko, huwag kayong mag-alala dahil nandirito kami ni Presidente Rodrigo Duterte upang magbigay ng tulong sa inyo. Huwag kayong mahiyang lumapit sa amin dahil trabaho namin ang magserbisyo sa inyo,” Go said in a video call.

The previous day, March 16, his team gave the same aid to over 2,000 victims in Cagwait.

To ensure their full recovery, government agencies tasked with the responsibility of delivering emergency relief and recovery assistance to families and communities in crisis situations also took part in the said activities.

Personnel from the Department of Social Welfare and Development distributed cash assistance while the Department of Agriculture gave away rodenticide and supplies of vegetable seeds to encourage home gardening.

The Departments of Labor and Employment, and Trade and Industry, in turn, conducted assessments of displaced workers in need of emergency employment and livelihood assistance, respectively. In addition, the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority offered scholarship grants to workers who wish to develop new skills.

“Huwag kayo mag-alala dahil ginagawa ng gobyerno ang lahat para balansehin ang inyong mga pangangailangan habang pinapangalagaan ang buhay ng bawat Pilipino,” said Go.

“Pagkatapos ng mga frontliners, prayoridad namin ni Pangulong Duterte ang mga mahihirap at ‘yung mga nasa vulnerable sectors. Ito ‘yung mga taong kailangang lumabas para magtrabaho. ‘Yung mga ‘isang kahig, isang tuka’,” he explained.

In addition to the above aid, the Senator also offered the assistance of his office to those in urgent need of medical care. He advised them to also seek government aid through the Malasakit Center at the Butuan Medical Center in Butuan City.

The Malasakit Center is a one-stop shop which simplifies access to the medical assistance programs offered by the DSWD, Department of Health, Philippine Health Insurance Corporation, and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.

In his message, the Senator also recognized and thanked the local officials for their dedicated service to the affected communities. Among those present during the activities were Bayabas Mayor Maria Clarita Limbaro and Vice Mayor Apolonio Lozada , and Cortes Mayor Jose Bonifacio and Vice Mayor Dennis Yu.

“Hindi ko sasayangin ang aking oras na nakaupo lang sa opisina. Magseserbisyo ako sa inyo sa abot ng aking makakaya dahil mahal ko ang mga kapatid kong Pilipino,” said Go.

“Nalulungkot ako dahil alam kong hirap na hirap na kayo. Hirap na din kami ni Pangulong Duterte pero kayo po ang nagbibigay ng lakas sa amin para paigtingin pa namin ang aming pagseserbisyo sa ating bayan,” he added.

Pulong gives relief aid to Davao fire victims

DAVAO CITY – The office of the First Congressional District Representative Paolo “Pulong” Duterte distributed on Saturday afternoon cash aid and rice packs to more than 500 families affected by a fire incident in Barangay Vicente Duterte in Agdao District.

Each recipient – which composed of house owners, sharers, boarders, renters, and caretakers – received cash aid and 10 kilos sack of rice from Rep. Duterte’s office. The distribution was held at Holy Cross Drive in Barangay Vicente Duterte at around 1:30 p.m.

House owner Lyn Noble, 31, a factory worker, described the current situation as exhausting. She added that she and her husband were not around when the fire gutted down their house; not even a single valuable item was saved from the incident.

“Maayo nalang naa koy paryente diri sa siyudad, didto mi karon temporarily nag-stay samtang gapaabot mi kung kanus-a pwede makabalik sa amoa or kung mangita na ba mi niini ug balay na makabalhinan,” Noble said.

In the initial report from the Davao City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO), 574 families have been affected by the incident, of which 275 are house owners, 126 are sharers, 127 are renters, 40 are boarders, and six are caretakers.

The fire gutted down over 300 houses at Purok IKP and San Jose in Barangay Vicente Duterte on March 9, Tuesday, at around 2:53 p.m. leaving the victims homeless. All victims are temporarily sheltered at Kasilak Gymnasium and two other evacuation centers in the barangay.

Barangay Vicente Duterte chairwoman Remedios dela Luz said that she was really saddened about the incident. Luz expressed her gratitude to the First Congressional District Office, especially to Rep. Duterte, for the extended help to the fire victims.

The district office has been giving food packs not only to its constituents, but also to other areas of Davao City where people are in need of immediate assistance even amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis.

Bong Go sends assistance to fire victims in Davao Oriental, reminds public to remain vigilant in observance of Fire Prevention Month

The Office of Senator Christopher “Bong” Go provided assistance on Thursday, March 4, to a total of ten families who lost their houses due to separate fire incidents in Lupon and Caraga towns in Davao Oriental.

The beneficiaries were given meals, food packs, and financial assistance during an activity held at Barangay Don Mariano Hall in Lupon. The fire victims were also provided with vitamins, masks, and face shields so they can protect themselves from COVID-19.

Seven families from Lupon were affected by a fire incident that happened on February 26 while the other three families came from a previous fire incident in Caraga town that happened in February 7.

A selected beneficiary was given a new pair of shoes, while another recipient facing difficulties commuting to work received a bicycle. A beneficiary was also provided with a computer tablet so that his child can better study at home under the blended learning set-up implemented by schools.

Antonio Regomeo, Jr., one of the beneficiaries, tearfully described the fire incident where he lost his child.

“Hindi ko na malapitan at mailigtas ang aking anak dahil sa sunog sa loob ng bahay. Gusto ko man iligtas pero naroon din nanay ko na nasusunog din ang katawan. Dinala ko na rin agad sa Mati para ipa-ospital,” Regomeo recalled. The mother later passed away.

“Ngayon, nakakuha kami ng tulong mula kay Senador Bong Go kaya maraming salamat kasi malaking tulong ito sa amin. May makain kami at maibabalik ng paunti-unti ang aming kabuhayan,” he added.

Meanwhile, Go assisted Regomeo over the loss of his child and the medical bills of his mother who suffered severe burns and eventually died too. Through the Malasakit Center which Go pushed in 2019 and was signed into law by President Duterte in the same year, Regomeo had zero billing in Southern Philippines Medical Center in Davao City.

The Senator also personally attended the launch of the Malasakit Center at the Davao Oriental Provincial Medical Center in Mati City in October last year.

“Kay Antonio, nakikiramay ako. Alam kong masakit dahil nawala ang iyong mga mahal sa buhay pero handa akong tumulong sa iyo,” Go said.

As part of the government’s response efforts, various national agencies also took part in the activities to deliver aid for the beneficiaries so they can rebuild their lives.

Representatives from the Department of Social Welfare and Development distributed additional financial assistance to the fire victims. The Department of Trade and Industry assessed recipients for their livelihood program.

Additionally, the National Housing Authority validated beneficiaries for housing assistance or relocation. The Department of Agriculture also distributed packs of vegetable seedlings, while the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office distributed grocery packs.

The Department of Labor and Employment, meanwhile, offered livelihood to displaced or disadvantaged workers, while the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority provided skills training.

Go also went on to recognize the local and national public officials for their service to their communities. Among those present during the activity were former Mayor Domingo A. Lim who is also the husband of incumbent Mayor Erlinda Lim, Vice Mayor Sonny Alonzo and the rest of the official roster.

The Senator also reminded the public to take precautionary measures and continue to be vigilant to prevent fire incidents as the month of March is Fire Prevention Month. He said that as a legislator, he continues to be committed to respond to the needs of ordinary Filipinos, especially those in distress and victims of various crises through an improved Bureau of Fire Protection.

“Ngayon po ay Fire Prevention Month, maging mas maingat tayo para maiwasan ang sunog at hindi na magkaroon pa ng ganitong mga trahedya. Sisikapin kong maipasa ang mga panukalang ito para wala nang gamit at lalong wala nang buhay ang mawawala dahil sa sunog,” the Senator said.

One of Go’s priority bills, which was one of the bases of the committee report for Senate Bill No. 1832, mandates the BFP to develop and implement a fire protection modernization program. These will include the acquisition of modern fire equipment, an expansion of the BFP’s manpower, and the provision of specialized training for firefighters, among others.

It will also be mandated that the BFP shall conduct monthly fire prevention campaigns and information drives in every local government unit, especially in informal settlements, economically depressed areas, and far-flung communities.