Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office 1 continues to render disaster duties in Ilocos Sur one week after the onslaught of Typhoon Ompong.

Ma. Bernadette B. Arcangel, Social Welfare and Development Team Leader for Ilocos Sur, reported that requests for augmentation from affected towns are still pouring.

“We are still forwarding requests to the Regional Office so our team is continuously busy with the relief operations,” says Arcangel.

When Typhoon Ompong hit Ilocos Sur last weekend, thirty (30) employees from different units of DSWD FO 1 immediately responded to the call for disaster duties and were stationed at the Provincial Operations Office in Vigan City where they monitored requests for relief supplies and coordinated the consequent release to affected municipalities.

DSWD FO 1 staff helps in the distribution of family, hygiene, and sleeping kits to an evacuee at Mindoro Elementary School in Vigan City, Ilocos Sur (upper photo); release of relief supplies at the satellite warehouse in Ayusan Norte, Vigan City. (lower photo).

“Mahirap iwanan ang iyong pamilya kasi nag-aalala ka sa kanilang kaligtasan pero dahil nasa ahensya tayo na dapat nauunang nagbibigay ng tulong, mahirap maging makasarili o sarili lang ang iniisip sa mga panahong ganito. (It’s hard to leave your family because you are worried about their safety but since we are a welfare agency that is at the helm of public service, we can not be selfish at times like this),” says Beberly A. Agam, Administrative Aide VI of the Disaster Response and Management Division, one of the employees who helped in the relief operations.

The Field Office also helped in the distribution of relief supplies to affected families and individuals temporarily housed in evacuation centers throughout Ilocos Sur.

In the first 72 hours of Typhoon Ompong in the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR), the team provided food and non-food items amounting to almost 5 million pesos to nine (9) municipalities. (by Ruperto A. Sabalo, Jr., Social Marketing Officer, Kalahi-CIDSS)