Archive for the ‘rehabilitation’ Category

Update on Operation Blessings: Wheelchair distribution in Bicol

January 15, 2009

Operation Blessings

by Dr. Josephine R. Bundoc

Operation Blessing (OB,) the charitable project which aims to give away wheelchairs to indigent disabled amputees in March has set its guidelines in the selection of recipients from Bicol. Since the available wheelchairs are limited, Ibalonian Dr. Josephine R. Bundoc, consultant of the UP-PGH Rehabilitation Medicine Department has the following guidelines in the conduct of the charitable giving:

Requirements of Operation Blessings for the wheelchair recipients are:

1. Name, age, medical diagnosis and reason(s) for needing a wheelchair: a
physician’s signature is preferred, but not required.
2. DSWD Case Study report on the recipient
3. Barangay certificate that the recipient is a resident of the barangay.

Operation Blessings’ counterparts— the LGUs, NGOs or partner(s) are enjoined to assist in the following:

1. Board and lodging of the O.B. team (normally 6 personnel) for 2-3 days
2. Venue for distribution – preferably gym or something like the Naga Civic Center
3. Transportation expenses of wheelchairs
4. Manpower to assist in wheelchair assembly

Operation Blessings plans to distribute free wheelcharis in Bicol on the 3rd to 4th week of March. For Camarines recipients, Daet, Camarines Norte will be the stop-over before Naga City and Camarines Sur. The distribution team will then proceed to Tabaco, Santo Domingo, Legaspi, Tiwi in Albay province, and subsequently proceeding to Sorsogon City in Sorsogon Province.

Ibalonians within and in between the above-mentioned areas may submit requirements of potential recipients before Feb 15, 2009 so they may be included in the distribution. Expecting to be in Naga City to meet with those involved with the project, Dr. Bundoc and the UP Ibalon Alumni president Butch M. Robredo express their thanks to all those who commit themselves and find in their hearts valuable time and energy in helping this worthy endeavor. The participation of more members and non-member volunteers are welcome and gratefully appreciated.(Photo Credit: Edgar Jediza) =0=

Addendum: On February 6, 2009, there will be amputee screening and measurement of beneficiaries in Naga City. Only 6 wheelchairs will be handed over since documentation by DSWD and verification of eligibility of recipients are not yet completed.—mesiamd (01/16/09)

RELATED BLOG: “UP Ibalon Alumni-Bicol pursues its wheelchair & leg prosthesis project for indigents” Posted by mesiamd at 1/09/2009

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30,000 families to be relocated in Bicol train rehab

December 13, 2008

It’s like Rip Van Winkle coming out from sleep. At last, the plan to repair the Philippine National Railways (PNR) from Laguna to Legazpi City is alive again. For the project to push, it will require the relocation of 30,000 families settled on the 15-meter clearance of the train’s path.

The government plan is definite good news to Bicol, but it’s mind-bending why only now will repairs be undertaken. The train plying the southern end of Luzon is different from how it looked decades ago as it meandered in the craggy mountainsides of Quezon Province to the foot of Mount Isarog in Camarines Sur and Mayon in Albay. Huge numbers of people have already crowded the tracks, the 483-kilometer stretch from Manila.

Vital to travel in the Bicol region and the rest of the country, the PNR had been largely neglected. It practically operated in meager maintenance budget even if plans to extend the line, about 135 kilometers from Legazpi to Sorsogon had been on the works.

Wooden planks and metal supports on the transportation line were continual victims of thieves who used them as firewood or sell them as scraps. For many years, almost nobody took action for their upkeep, to the disappointment of Bicolanos. The yearly torrential rains caused infrastructure damage. The government did little to prevent people from building houses along the railway tracks.

This early the concern for the legal rights of the squatters has been raised. Human rights groups are pushing for standard eviction amenities. The enormity of the problem causes some interested investors to back out of the project.

“Jun de la Torre, Community Organization of the Philippines (COPE) assistant regional coordinator said they have strengthened their social preparation efforts in favor of the railway settlers by collaborating with 10-federation strong Bicol Urban Poor Coordinating Council (BUPCC) headed by Lorna Chavez to ensure that the rights of these affected settlers would not be derailed when the PNR rehabilitation project starts in the near future.” Bicol Mail, (12/12/08, Neola, J)

The project is rocked with questionable political deals. P17 billion has been allotted to remove the illegal dwellers on the dangerous tracks. It constitutes a third of the total budget of P52.19—the cost of the much delayed project which was earlier scheduled in 2005 to 2011.

It is uncertain when the money will come or if it is adequate. With the postponements that go with government projects, at this time, the railway rehabilitation remains a dream for Bicolanos. (Photo Credits: Orangedroplet; Alcogoodwin; Alcogoodwin; orangedroplet)=0=

RELATED BLOG: “Life on the railway tracks & the fate of Isadora Duncan” Posted on Friday September 12th, 2008

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Corrosive Love, Disfiguring Revenge

August 18, 2008

In some cultures, like in Pakistan, some boys whose proposals for marriage are rejected take revenge by throwing acid to their object of love. In some cases, the reason for the acid throwing is simple as a parent who doesn’t want a girl-child. It’s mind-bending to realize that this tragic incidents still occur in the 21st century.

The resultant irreversible chemical burn and its hypopigmented scars are as disfiguring as one sees the face of Najaf Sultana, 16, who went through 15 plastic surgeries since she was 5 years old to lessen cicatrization. It is with the help of a humanitarian group called Depilex Smileagain Foundation in Lahore. The group lists 240 girls like Najaf who are provided rehabilitative emotional and physical assistance to overcome such inhumane treatment of women. (PCredit:AP/Morenatti,E)=0=