CATEEL, DAVAO ORIENTAL  -Survivors of Tropical Storm Pablo here confirmed anew that spirit of oneness and resistance to adversity helped them overcome the aftermath of the dreadful typhoon that shattered their family and community in 2012.

Jaime Delos Reyes, a farmer, said, “We are thankful for all the help of the government. Working together, we have risen up from the damage we experienced.”

Rice Processing Center beneficiary Chona Cabañog of Barangay Taytayan is now able to live normally and expressed her gratitude for the project that enabled them easily process their palay. She has seven children and five are professional.

Cateel mayor Camilo T. Nuñez acknowledged the substantial support of the national government through DSWD. “You have witnessed our situation now. We are united with the leadership of the governor. Our priority now is the rehabilitation of our community facilities.”

Pantawid Pamilya and Modified Shelter Assistance Program (MSAP) recipient Narcilita Lazo admitted that bayanihan system is at work in their new Better Living Village in Poblacion Cateel. “We are also very conscious of the cleanliness in our community.”

Lazo has six children with the two now in college.

Farmer Melvin Nacis shared, “We are united. That’s the reason why we have easily recovered.” Nacis also cited the support they received from the government and conveyed his gratefulness.

DPWH District Engineer Lito Caballero recognized the effort of each one. “They unite in order to recover, all levels of government –national, local really helped each other.”

Narcing Tumo and Pacito Dacuycuy said they recovered because they cooperated with the others.

“We helped one another so that Cateel recovered. Walang tamad (We discourage indolence),” Marian Bete strongly pushed.

Governor Corazon N. Malanyaon emphasized, “Through the collaboration of the provincial government, the LGUs, national agencies like the DTI, DA, DOST, DSWD, DOLE and the ICRC, starter kits, seeds and technology assistance were provided to typhoon-affected farmers on chili production, processing, packaging and marketing of hot chili products.”

Paquito Ochoa, President of EDSA People Power Commission said, “Walang pagsubok na magpapayuko sa mga Pilipino with the support of all sectors.”

All these community settlers and officials were part of the crowd of parents, farmers, students, teachers and government officials who participated in the Pulong-Bayan sa Cateel Monday morning where President Benigno C. Aquino III joined thousands of Typhoon Pablo survivors commemorate the 28th EDSA Revolution Anniversary.

In her message, Governor Corazon N. Malanyaon emphasized, “We still have to continue with our rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts for the Pablo-hit areas of Davao Oriental…Having a solid support from the national government and other development collaborators, and having put in place operational mechanisms, we are positive that we can harness more resources and partners…”

“We unite with the whole nation in celebrating EDSA. We have proven that we can rise up again and move on. We have shown our strength and unity as Flipinos,” affirmed Director Priscilla N. Razon, DSWD.

The spirit of unity was aptly capped by master of ceremonies John Joson of EDSA People Power Commission, “Buhay na buhy ang tunay na diwa ng EDSA na pagkakaisa dito sa Davao Oriental. Walang imposible pag walang iwanan… Pag gustong magmalasakit, magbibigay ng walang kapalit.”

Underscoring unity and resilience, Pres. Aquino topped, Kapit-bisig tayong kumikilos. Gaya ng ipinamalas natin noong 1986, muli nating pinapatunayan sa mundo ang pambihirang pagmamalasakit ng Pilipino sa kapwa Pilipino. …Malalagpasan natin ang mga darating pang pagsubok… Habang nagkakaisa, mararating natin ang gustong paroroonan.” (DSWD)