Posts Tagged ‘dswd’

I made several recommendations last night after my first day at the controversial DSWD/UNICEF warehouses regarding the need to optimize the packing lines so we can move goods faster. The critical need, however, are warm volunteers, a lot of able hands, because without them nothing will get packed. The optimized lines will be like online commentaries, nothing but air.

In the morning, there were only 4 volunteers who came to help Ensha at the UNICEF warehouse. My good ole friends from Microsoft days Marvin and MR Cruz were there from 8AM. They worked for 12 hours with Marvin supervising the operations after Ensha left. 12 hours! Marvs, MR, you guys are my heroes. With Ensha was Elay from Antipolo. And if this doesn’t inspire you, I don’t know what would. An American film maker, Ian, flew from Cebu to just help. He’s flying back tomorrow. I will repeat that. Ian is not even Filipino and he is based in Cebu. He flew all the way from Cebu, pack and go back. Can you imagine that? And some can’t even be bothered to get off their comfortable seats but I’ll stop the bitching here.

DSWD had many volunteers. The UPS guys were still there. DSWD kindly sent 16 Singles for Christ members to help the 5 guys slaving away at the UNICEF warehouse.

At around 2PM, 41 Army reserve soldiers and 3 officers headed by Col. Javier and Master Sgt. Penafiel arrived and things started moving faster.

In the afternoon, Carla Sta. Cruz of ADB, Martha Sapalo of the Air Force, my friends and fellow Red Cross Rizal volunteers Chef Christine Zarandin and Benjo Ramos arrived. I was the last one to arrive.

My hats off to everyone who came and helped.

I’m deeply concerned though if we want to move these goods where they are needed. I’m no logistics expert but in order to move these goods, we need people and an efficient process. But we need people first. It’s a weekend and only 8 volunteered. If not for the military and the Singles for Christ, they couldn’t have packed over 800 starter kits to families displaced by the floods. I cannot count the Facebook posts, twitter RTs and online commentaries on the issue. It even made a trending topic in twitter which is not as easy feat. But only 8 came.

Many reacted to Ella’s blog whose photos are taken from the UNICEF warehouse. Many reacted passionately crying why the goods are not moving. You know why the goods are not moving? It’s not because DSWD personnel are corrupt or incompetent. It’s simply because YOU, yes YOU are doing nothing but cry, complain, criticize from your air-conditioned rooms, pointing your fingers, devising your conspiracy theories and blaming. If Ian can take the plane from Cebu so he can contribute, what can you contribute? Instead of saying what else is wrong with our government, ask yourself: “What can I contribute?”

Just a volunteer,


Video. Photos.

To volunteer, please let us know:

For UNICEF: Ensha: 0917 577 4108 or me 0917 577 7602.

For DSWD Ms Fabian: 8528081 or Gang:

We need the following:

  1. Your name
  2. Contact info
  3. Days and times you can commit. (This is very important because we are coordinating with DSWD and UNICEF and they need to know how many people are they expecting at which times so they can also inform their staff, eg security guards, warehouse managers, etc. It will just make it easier for everyone, most especially you when you get there.)


Wow! So much talk and so many extra issues.

I personally went there this afternoon to (1) help move the goods that were supposed to be not moving and (2) see for myself what’s happening and see what else I can do. (MLQ3, thanks for quoting my blog. I wanted to clarify things for myself and hopefully for others. I did not insinuate that original blogger talked about pilferage. I was just clarifying through issues that could be going in people’s minds.)

To everyone who has not gone there, stop the talk and go there before you pass any judgment.

As far as I could actually see for myself, the DSWD, UNICEF personnel, volunteers were working as hard as they can and sweating it out there, getting cuts in their arms trying to insert those blankets inside the water jugs.

I see a lot of people talking and commenting in this blog. While I will kill and die to defend your right to free speech and expression, I want to request that you please stop for a while and just go there, if not to see for yourselves what is happening but to lend a hand. I twitted, FBed, SMS, called everyone I know and only 15 came earlier. We need all the hands and less talk.

Can things be improved there? Yes!

I may disagree with how DSWD is managing the packing lines but I understand it. I wouldn’t have if I didn’t go. The DSWD warehouse management is limiting the number of volunteers, a choice they made because it may have been to them the most optimal way to manage the process better. I disagree with it and think the warehouses could handle more (if more volunteers come) but I feel that it was done with the good intentions of delivering the goods where they are needed. I feel no malice.

My suggestion: recruit line managers, delegate responsibility to them and have 24/7 shifts. (Assuming volunteers come.)

There’s also a very obvious communication problem. I do not personally know Dr. Cabral but it seems to me that what she thought at her level was implemented, was not implemented down the line, eg security guards blowing off would be volunteers. This happens in any organization.

My suggestion: As soon as the 24/7 production line is organized, get everyone in the organization on the same page, including and especially the guards and the front office for they are what volunteers encounter first. (If I didn’t ask for UNICEF none of the people would have suggested it and I would have spending that Saturday afternoon reading your blogs instead of stuffing pots and soaps in sacks.) Then recruit, recruit volunteers. Many are willing.

Are the goods going to where they are intended? I don’t know.

Suggestion: Call Dr. Cabral and find out how you can help with deployment. Then go with the deployment teams. Then you can see it first hand and give it from your hand to hand of the very person receiving the goods.

There are a lot of corruption in the government but not everyone is corrupt. There’s a lot of things that needs to be improved in the way the government is handling things. Question is: “Are you just gonna talk about it or get up and do something?”

From someone who’s been there and still trying to do that.

See MLQ3’s blog.