Gokongwei Employees’ Relief Efforts for Mayon Evacuees

Donations continue to pour in for Mt. Mayon evacuees, as more than 8,000 families remain in over 25 relief centers in Legazpi city. Adding to the list of those who have pledged support are JG Summit Holdings, Inc. companies Universal Robina Corporation (URC) and Cebu Pacific (CEB), with their joint relief drive to aid the displaced residents of Albay.

The effort is spearheaded by URC’s human resources division , which has been collecting donations from the food manufacturer’s employees. In addition, URC products such Nissin Pancit Canton, Payless Pancit Canton, Magic Flakes, Great Taste Coffee were already brought to Albay, to be distributed to the various relief centers in the province. CEB is handling the transport of these donations to Legaspi, and the turnover to local government units for immediate dispatch.

Last week, due to decreased volcanic activity, some 850 families or 3,500 persons with homes in low-risk areas were allowed to go home. These are people who were living outside the eight-kilometer extended danger zone in two villages of Sto. Domingo in Albay, namely San Fernando and San Isidro.

The sulfur dioxide emission rate remains high, though, at more than 5,000 tons daily, as Mt. Mayon continues it’s relatively quiet explosion. Meanwhile, the temporary relief shelters continue to house more than 40,000 people.

Packing goods for Mayon evacuees

“Being so far removed from where it’s all happening, it’s hard for all of us to imagine what the evacuees are going through,” says URC Human Resources Director Nic Lim. “We hope that the outpouring of support from the rest of the country can do something to raise their spirits,” Lim added. Project partner Cebu Pacific echoes this sentiment. “We’re glad that there is something within our framework of operations that can be instrumental in helping out,” said CEB Marketing Director Candice Iyog.

According to social welfare officials, more than P7.5 million in aid has been received since alert level four was proclaimed. Nearly half of the amount came from the government, NGO and private sectors.