By BRO ELY DEJARESCO (BCBP North–Dumaguete)
Some 553 earthquake-stricken families in Negros Oriental whose houses were totally damaged by the Feb. 6 earthquake of 6.9 magnitude, received a week’s ration of basic food necessities from the Brotherhood of Christian Businessmen and Professionals BCBP of Dumaguete. The bulk of the total fund release of P150,000 came from BCBP National through the MANCOM which was P100,000 ; BCBP Dumaguete gave P7,350; P3500 came from BCBP Tagbilaran, and other private and individual donations.
The basic food distribution last March 3 was focused on 17 stricken barangays in the town of Ayungon, Negros Oriental. According to Bro Leo Cabrera, former RCD of Dumagute-Tagbilaran regions, this choice was based on the recommendation of the local and international Red Cross team who had been in charge of the official distribution of relief goods aside from the LGUs , NGOs and peoples organizations. Directly assisting the Red Cross distribution were BCBP Dumaguete North and South chapter members.
Five northern Negros Oriental towns suffered a direct hit from the epicenter which was in the town of Tayasan, in the Tanon strai , 20 kilometers deep. And the major shock rippled around the adjacent towns of Ayungon, Jimalalud, La Libertad and Guihulngan city.
BCBP-Dumaguete North Chapter Head Edgar Diputado reported that each of the 553 families received 5 kilos of rice, 5 cans of sardines, 5 packs of noodles, and 1 pack of cookies. Each family were given claim cards from the Red Cross to make sure recipients were given one package each for each family.
The Red Cross-BCBP distribution teams were deployed in three strategic areas namely the mountain barangays, the coastal villages and the poblaciones or town center of Ayungon.
The following is the breakdown of how the relief packages were distributed per barangay: BARANGAYS: Calagcalag 17 families; Kilaban, 20 families; Banban 49; Candanay 98; Tampocon1, 46 families; Tampocon2 , 36 famlies; Awaan, 36; Iniban 14, Tambo 18; Tibyawan, 49; Amdus l4; Atabay 54; kilaban, 54; Poblacion 41 ; Inacban 2 families; Anibong 4; and Gementoc, 1.
It was noted that with over a month since the last major quake, some l,800 after-shocks are still recorded in total until today. It is ironic that whenever there is an after shock with a minimum of between 4 to 5 intensity, people in the mountains go down for fear of landslides while people in the coastal areas run up to the mountains for fear of tsunami, as traumatized by the Japan experience. No matter how often the Phivolcs advises the rural folks that a tsunami is far-fetched and that after-shocks are getting lower in intensity, the trauma and the fear of their ground being rocked like a boat, continues to haunt the people.