Taking care of children and two orphaned grandchildren together with a tricycle driver husband is more than a twenty-four-hour job for a mother of ten, Aling Elizabeth Lopez. Although some of her children are not living with her anymore, she took the responsibility of raising her two grandsons.
Aling Elizabeth’s household, a Pantawid Pamilya beneficiary, is one of the residents of Pontevedra, Capiz who was left homeless after typhoon Yolanda.
“Noong pong bumabagyo, tumakbo na kami dito kaagad sa gym. Dala lang po namin mga damit na suot namin at wala ng iba”, she recalled.
“Malakas na po ang hangin noon pero ‘yung asawa ko namasada pa ng tricyle para may kita dahil yun lang po ikinabubuhay ng pamilya ko”, she said.
The house of Aling Elizabeth was near the river. When typhoon Yolanda crossed their area, everything she has saved and earned inside their house was flown away. Some of them have been drowned in the mud.
“Wala na po talagang natira sa amin, na-wash out na. Totally damaged na bahay namin. Noong bumalik kami kinaumagahan, sinubukan ko pa pong isalba ang ilang mga gamit namin lalo na mga damit na nalubog sa putik”, she shared.
The day after the typhoon, Aling Elizabeth recalled how the assistance from the local government and DSWD has given her a chance to smile again.
“Buti na lang matapos ang bagyo nakatanggap kami kaagad ng tulong tulad ng pagkain, bigas, noodles, lalagyan ng tubig, isang baldeng groceries galling sa munisipyo, DSWD at mga foreigners”, she said.
“Naging maayos po ang pagtulong sa amin kahit papaano. Madalas may mga taga-DSWD kinukumusta kami at namimigay ng relief goods”, she said.
“Pero sa ngayon hindi namin alam kung paano kami magsisimula ulit dahil wala na po talaga kaming bahay”, she said.
Her household is one of the priorities of the DSWD in cooperation with the local government and other government agencies who will be assessed so that they can avail the shelter kits worth thirty thousand pesos as announced by Secretary Soliman during her visit in Panay Island.
As a PantawidPamilya beneficiary, Aling Elizabeth has recognized and appreciated again the importance of the Program’s grants to her family especially with seven children and two grandsons living under her roof.
“Hindi ko ma-explain pero malaki talaga ang naitutulong at maitutulong ng Pantawid sa amin lalo na para sa mga bata at sasitwasyon namin ngayon”, she said.
“Ang pagbibiyahe ng asawa ko kahit araw-araw hindi kasya para sa buong pamilya kaya nagpapasalamat ako kahit papaano malaki ang naitulong ng DSWD at Pantawid”, she said.
Aling Elizabeth stressed that even they are now homeless, she believes that with the help they are getting, they can start all over again. #DSWD-CAR, SOCIAL MARKETING UNIT, Jomel Anthony V. Gutierrez