The Philippine Army Commanding General together with other Army reservists led the distribution of relief items to Taal eruption evacuees in Sto. Tomas Batangas today, January 14.
Lt. Gen. Gilbert Gapay, 2nd Lt. Matteo Guidicelli (Res) and other reservists from the 401st Ready Reserve Infantry Battalion distributed bags of relief goods to around 200 families currently in Poblacion 3, Batangas City Evacuation Center.
“Nagpapasalamat po kami kasi naalala po nila kami na bigyan ng tulong,” said 52-year-old Marilyn Olimpiada who left San Isidro, Taal Island with her family on Sunday night to take refuge at the center.
One of the first responders, Marissa Castillo who holds the rank of Corporal as a reservist said “Sobrang masaya sa pakiramdam na nakakatulong kahit wala kaming tulog. Three days and three nights talaga kaming nasa labas para tumulong sa mga nasalanta. Anytime naka-antabay kami to help them.” Castillo was enlisted in the reserve component last May 2019.
The relief items which were delivered to the displaced families came from the initiative of private individuals and business entities yesterday. The Philippine Army provided trucks and personnel to help transport the donations.
“We thought about how we could help our kababayans that’s why i asked my friends what we can contribute and this is what we’ve gathered so far. I am also urging the others to take part,” said Guidicelli.
“We share in the difficulties of the people affected by this calamity. We are here now as a sign of our commitment to serve those who are in need. We hope that this gesture will inspire others to do the same to help in whatever way they can,” said Gapay. PHILIPPINE ARMY