The Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Governor and Valenzuela City District 1 Representative, Cong. Sherwin T. Gatchalian oath Mayor REX Gatchalian as Honorary Chairman of the humanitarian organization’s local chapter during its board meeting last Friday, August 16, at the Our Lady of Fatima University’s San Lorenzo Hall.
According to the Red Cross bylaw, the local chief executive shall be the chapter’s Honorary Chairman, the same way the President of the Philippines shall be the Honorary President of the PRC by virtue of RA 10072 or the Red Cross Act of 2009. Since, the term of former mayor ended last June, the new mayor shall take over the position even without the biennial conference.
During the term of Mayor WIN, the city government has been a staunch supporter of the Red Cross Valenzuela Chapter. Among the noteworthy supports is the sponsorhip of the cost of training of several batches of Red Cross 143 and Red Cross Youth Councils. It resulted to the dramatic climb of the number of RC 143 volunteers to more than 5,000 to date, prompting PRC Chairman, Richard J. Gordon to declare Valenzuela City the “City of Volunteers.”
Mayor REX said that the partnership between the city government and the PRC Valenzuela City has long been proven valuable to the delivery of health care services, and disaster response and mitigation to the residents.
From January to July, the PRC Valenzuela City collected 2,971 bags of blood, 70 per cent of its target of 4,200 for the year. 612 of which had been released: 442 to 268 patients who directly contacted the PRC Valenzuela City and 117 were coursed through the hospitals.
Besides running a blood bank, the chapter also helps the city government in evacuation and rescue operations during calamities and typhoons. Their staff and volunteers are among the first to response when the communities are already flooded.
PRC Valenzuela City Chairwoman, Ms. Elizabeth Chongco reported that PRC Valenzuela needs a fund of PhP 15,233,316.00 for its projects for 2013. Almost half of this would be covered by its savings amounting to PhP 7,758,051.63.
The fund will be used to maintain its blood bank and office in Marulas, conduct disaster management and first aid trainings among various sectors, and enhance the skills of its staff.
To meet its target, PRC Valenzuela will raise funds through direct solicitation from donors and sale of raffle tickets, among other measures..
The PRC Valenzuela City was hailed Chapter of the Year in 2009 and was later conferred the Award of Excellence in 2012 for overachieving its fund campaign goals in three consecutive years, 2009, 2010 and 2011. Ms. Chongco is optimistic that the chapter will reach its goal for this year with the support of the city government.
When Mayor REX was District 1 representative, he was donating annually PhP 200,000 from his Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) to the PRC Valenzuela City. Now that he is the local chief executive and also the chapter’s honorary chairman, he vows to continue the logistical and administrative supports to its programs for the welfare of Valenzuelanos.
During the meeting, City Council Majority Floor Leader, Coun. Antonio S. Espiritu was also inducted as an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors of PRC Valenzuela City by PRC Governor Andrew Nocon.