CEBU City, Dec. 4, 2013—The National Secretariat for Social Action Justice and Peace (NASSA) of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) met with members of Caritas Internationalis and local partners to discuss and map out coordinated response for a comprehensive rehabilitation of areas devastated by typhoon Yolanda.
The meeting, held at the Archbishop’s Residence in Cebu City, tackled a long term program of recovery and rehabilitation, including emergency preparedness and disaster risk reduction program, which will be launched on the first quarter of 2014.
NASSA Executive Secretary, Fr. Edwin Gariguez discussed strategies on how to coordinate with the affected dioceses; how the diocesan coordinators would do their part to make things faster and easier; support for NASSA and the dioceses in reconstruction phase; and capacity building on national and diocesan level.
“Our priority dioceses are Palawan, San Jose de Antique, Jaro, Kalibo, Capiz, Cebu, Calbayog, Palo and Borongan,” Gariguez said.
Meanwhile, NASSA National Director Bishop Broderick Pabillo, let the Bishops and representatives from affected dioceses share their experiences and asked their urgent needs so the Church partners may know how to support them.
The meeting also highlighted the collaboration and coordination of different countries during calamities.
Local organizations present during the meeting were Catholic Relief Service (CRS), volunteers, Social Action Diocesan Coordinating Council, Daughters of Charity, San Carlos Seminary, Caritas Manila, Radyo Veritas, Basic Ecclesiastical Community coordinators, and Cordaid organization.
Also present were members of Caritas Internationalis from Asia, France, Spain, Canada, Australia, Ireland, Korea, Switzerland, Austria, Germany and UK.
BEC Chairman Fr. Amado Picardal, Borongan Bishop Crispin Varquez, Calbayog Bishop Isabelo Abarquez and Palo Archbishop John Du were also in attendance. (Yen Ocampo)