Senator Christopher “Bong” Go extended aid to the members of the Tricycle Operators and Drivers' Associations (TODAs) during an aid distribution event held at Barangay 201 in Pasay City on Wednesday, October 14.
In a video call, he checked on their welfare, assured them that his office is always ready to address their concerns, and reiterated the government’s commitment to overcome the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Go's outreach team provided meals, food packs, masks and face shields to 300 TODA members. Select members also received tablets for their children to use and attend classes remotely through the blended learning platforms implemented by schools. He emphasized the importance of education and said that learning must not stop despite the ongoing crisis.
“Mayroon po akong ipinadalang tablet para sa mga anak ninyo na nag-aaral. Sa kabataan natin, kung naririnig ninyo ako, mag-aral kayong mabuti kasi ‘yan lang ang pwede natin maiganti sa ating mga magulang na nagpapakamatay magtrabaho para mapaaral lang kayo,” said Go.
“Kasiyahan naming mga magulang na makita ang mga anak namin na makatapos. Importante ang edukasyon. Kaya kayong kabataan, mag-aral kayong mabuti para po sumaya ang mga magulang ninyo at mabigyan kayo ng sapat na pagkakataon na maiangat ang inyong pamumuhay,” he continued.
The Senator's staff also distributed bicycles to help recipients travel to work given the limited public transport options caused by the ongoing health crisis.
Additionally, the Department of Social Welfare and Development distributed cash assistance and food packs while the Department of Trade and Industry assessed potential beneficiaries for their livelihood assistance programs.
“Nabalitaan kong marami pang ‘di nakatatanggap ng ayuda sa inyo kaya nakiusap tayo sa DSWD para matugunan agad ang inyong hinaing at mabigyan kayo ng tulong. Nandyan din po ang DTI para sa gustong mag-avail ng tulong pangkabuhayan,” continued Go.
Before the pandemic, the Senator met with TODA leaders to listen to their concerns and help provide solutions to their daily struggles through active consultations.
In his virtual message, Go thanked the DSWD and DTI representatives for providing necessary assistance to the sector. He also recognized the continuing efforts of local government officials led by Pasay City Mayor Imelda G. Calixto-Rubiano to help their constituents as well as National Capital Region TODA Coalition President Ace Sevilla for being an active voice on behalf of the TODA sector.
Go, who serves as chair of the Senate Committee on Health, reminded the TODA members to strictly adhere to the government-issued health and safety protocols against COVID-19 by wearing their masks and face shields, washing their hands frequently and observing social distancing, among others.
“’Wag kayo mag-alala dahil kapag mayroon ng safe na vaccine, uunahin namin ni Pangulong [Rodrigo] Duterte ang mahihirap. Uunahin namin ang TODA para makabalik na kayo sa normal na pamumuhay,” he vowed, echoing the President’s commitment to prioritize poor and vulnerable sectors once a vaccine against COVID-19 is available.
“Palagi kong ipinagdarasal na makabalik na tayo sa normal na buhay kung saan mayayakap natin ang ating kapwa. Basta, magtulungan lang tayo at malalagpasan din natin ang pandemyang ito. Sino ba naman ang magtutulungan kundi tayo rin pong kapwa Pilipino. Magbayanihan lang po tayo at magmalasakit tayo sa ating kapwa,” he urged.
Go also assured them that his office continues to help those needing government assistance especially when it comes to medical concerns. He encouraged the community to avail of medical and financial assistance from their local Malasakit Center at the Pasay City General Hospital.
During the event, Go’s staff members also met with the family members of Annabel Salilid, who died on October 6 at the age 44 years. They sought financial assistance to cover the burial and funeral expenses of the deceased, which the DSWD committed to cover upon conducting an assessment.
“Handa kami ni Pangulong Duterte kasama ang buong gobyernong ito na magserbisyo sa inyo sa abot ng aming makakaya. Hindi po kami nangangako na kaya namin lahat ito pero sa abot ng aming makakaya ay gagawin namin ang lahat para po sa kapakanan ng mga Pilipino. Huwag po kayo mawalan ng pag-asa dahil malalagpasan rin natin ang pandemyang ito,” said Go. (OSBG)
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