Philippine Red Cross Shelter Project with Antipolo LDS

As part of the National Day of Service celebration, latter-day saints of the Antipolo Philippine Stake spent the whole Saturday  to Philippine Red Cross Shelter Assistance Project in Teresa Rizal. The event aims to provide help and assistance to local people working to build their own houses at no expense on their part. Over 200 members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ( known as Mormons) volunteered to this historic event. 

APRIL 16, 2011 – It was a bright and sunny Saturday, merely perfect for a summer getaway. But my friends and I have something more important else to do. We just thought its the better way to jump start the Summer Vacation in a very productive way. Weeks earlier, our ward Bishop announced our National Day of Service project, and the first thing that came in our minds, (or maybe just me, hehe), oh well its another day of cutting wild grasses, cleaning a dirty street (which will get soiled again after an hour) or just taking away old electoral posters along highways. But no, this time it sounded quite interesting. Its not because young adults are expected to join the service project so they can join the upcoming Young Single Adults Camp this May, but when our Bishop discussed what we will be having as our community service, it got more inviting. =)

Philippine National Red Cross is a premier humanitarian organization in the country committed to provide quality life-saving services that protect the life and dignity especially of indigent Filipinos in vulnerable situations. Leaders of the Antipolo Philippine Stake have worked with PNRC to provide one day of volunteer activity to help the local people of the shelter site build their own community. 

The site is located in Teresa Rizal, about 2 kilometers from the interior national road, with short-cut to Cogeo lower Antipolo as said by people living there. Obviously, the place is far from landmarks and business establishment. We even had difficulty in our network reception. The people who lives in the site are victims of typhoon Ondoy, Pepeng and Santi, 3 of the most destructive typhoons in 2009. These families are randomly selected from their previous address once a cluster (an area with 10 single detach shelters) is completed. Most the workers in the site, as I’ve discovered, are being paid Php 150 per day along with the hope of owning a shelter for their families. That is, you dont literally work for your own house, like what Gawad-Kalinga do. You build houses for other families so once your names are chosen you would have your own house previously built by other workers. Its like a post-paid or pre-paid scenario. The job to build a house is tough, not a joke from whatever point.

Here are some of our captured moments:

More than 200 latter-day saints from different parts of Antipolo gathered to receive their designated assignments.

Some folks enjoyed the service under the tree. =)

President Ardon lead the service with more work, less talk.

Before putting up the foundation, one must  break the ground first.

The site’s water system.

Digging up the canal.

One of the local residents posed for a photo while observing the service.

Local people did everything to get better tv reception.

That one is posted daily.

A young girl taking a view from their window.
A young child observing the volunteers do their job.
Manong vendor took the chance to sell his ice cream!

Aside from us, there were also military volunteers working in the site.

Missionaries spent the weekend for the National Day of Service.

Elder Quorum working on the wrong side of the wall.

Mas mahirap palang i-correct ang nakatagilid na pundasyon kesa ang itayo ito mula simula.

The event lasted until afternoon. A representative from Philippine Red Cross gave a meaningful message to the rest of the volunteers after the service. The National Day of Service is a social welfare project of the Church’s 50th Year Jubilee Celebration this coming April 30 at Araneta Center. Broadcast of the celebration will be available via satellite on selected Stake and District Centers nationwide. Approach a mormon friend if you’re interested to see this historic event.



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