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Private sector brings aid to affected communities following Taal eruption

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The Philippine Disaster Resilience Foundation (PDRF), made up of many of the largest corporations in the country, today released a list of private sector response efforts following the Taal ash eruption in Batangas.

PDRF, along with member companies Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation and Metrobank, is addressing immediate needs by distributing face masks in affected areas. In partnership with Airbnb Open Homes, PDRF is also ready to provide temporary accommodations for response teams.

Member companies have also brought other forms of aid: Manila Water sent thirty water tankers to evacuation centers in Batangas, including Bolbok Provincial Sports Complex, three sites in Tanauan, and one in Sto. Tomas. Ayala Corporation affiliates Globe Telecom, Generika Drugstore, and Ayala Malls are also responding to the current needs in Metro Manila and Calabarzon. Globe Telecom is providing free and unlimited internet connection in all four terminals of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) and select malls in Laguna, Cavite, and Batangas; Generika placed its clinics on high alert to provide medicine, medical supplies, first-aid, and medical consultation; and Ayala Malls extended the waiver of overnight parking fee to Jan. 13 and provided free Wi-Fi connection.

“We continue to coordinate the assistance of the private sector and engage our local and overseas partners and the government and LGUs to help people in whatever way we can,” said PDRF President Butch Meily.

Other response efforts include the 2,000 relief packs for various evacuation centers from PLDT-Smart Foundation (PSF) and Smart Communications; 1,000 hygiene kits with face masks for emergency responder teams from PSF; communications support for MMDA (Metropolitan Manila Development Authority) volunteers and Libreng Charging stations at the PLDT Tagaytay Office from Smart; and Alagang Kapatid Foundation’s deployment of a responder food truck starting January 14 to serve hot meals to at least one evacuation center a day.

One Meralco Foundation (OMF) also sent two solar mobile charging stations in evacuation centers in Alfonso, Cavite and is ready to distribute 3,000 relief packs for various evacuation centers in Cavite and Batangas.

In anticipation of requests for support from the government and other response partners, Meralco has generator sets on standby, Manila Water Foundation is set to deploy 2,000 five-gallon units of bottled water, and Metro Pacific Investments Foundation has prepositioned 1,000 blankets, 1,000 mats, 1,500 shirts, and 100 pieces of water filters for families.

In addition, Makati Medical Center Foundation is sending 8,000 disposable face masks, 2,400 bottles of Le Minerale mineral water, and 1,600 psycho-social first aid shoeboxes.  PDRF is also coordinating with Stat Med Ambulance and Medical Services, a fleet of ambulances that is part of the network of EMTs (Emergency Medical Technicians) in the Philippines, that will be deploying medical personnel to Batangas and providing logistical assistance for the transportation of relief goods.

Established in 2010, PDRF is the major private sector coordinator for disaster risk reduction and management in the country. Composed of over 85 member companies, PDRF is co-chaired by PLDT-Smart Communications Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan, Ayala Corporation Chairman and CEO Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, and Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle.

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