Flash floods were triggered by the southwest monsoon and struck the landlocked city of Bukidnon last August 7, which resulted in seven deaths and hundreds of evacuees from the affected areas. While most have been relocated and have received support through relief efforts, 27 families remain homeless.

Secretary of the Interior and Local Government Mar Roxas visited these families still in the evacuation center in Valencia, Bukidnon, on August 13.

Roxas first made sure that they were receiving food packs, and then assured them that he would pass the list of their names on to Secretary of Social Welfare and Development Dinky Soliman, who he met later in the day.

“Karun dugay-dugay, pagkatapos ng panyaga, magkitanan mi ni Secretary Dinky Soliman, unya idulong gid nako sa iya, isugit gid sa iya ang inyong na sitwasyon para mapabasid ug mahatagan ug atensyon ang pagdala diri sa mga temporary shelter na housing [After the meeting, I’ll meet Secretary Dinky Soliman and I will give her this list so she can see your situation and so she can give you the attention you deserve, even if just for temporary shelter],” he said.

The DILG Chief also informed the families, most of whom work on a per-day basis, about the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)’s Cash for Work program. Roxas also introduced 1st District Misamis Oriental Representative Peter Unabia, who owns the popular lechon manok chain, Señor Pedro.

“So ‘pag nagkanormal na kamo, hatagan mo ug sisiw, kamo magpadako, tapos baklon ninyo, naa na moy negosyo [When things are settled for you, (Unabia) will give you chicks, you will raise them, then sell them back to him, so you have livelihood],” Roxas said.

“Malakas man ang ulan, dumating ang baha, nadala sa agos ang mga bahay ninyo pero nandiyan ang gobyerno n’yo,” Roxas said to the families.

“Sige-sige lang. ‘Wag tayo sumuko, lakas loob lang, sama-sama, matatawid din natin ito. Malalagpasan din natin ito,” he added.