'Ondoy' survivor Cristine Reyes helps flood victims


Posted at Aug 22 2013 04:40 PM | Updated as of Aug 23 2013 12:40 AM

Actress Cristine Reyes. File photo

MANILA – Actor Derek Ramsay and actress Cristine Reyes joined forces to help those who have been affected by the floods that have hit Metro Manila this week.

Talking to ABS-CBN News on Wednesday, Ramsay said he was the one who first called Reyes and encouraged her to reach out to the victims of the calamity.

“Tinawagan ko siya sabi ko. ‘I really want to go out there. I can’t just sit here and watch this on the news.’ So she’s like, ‘Yeah let’s go.’ So pumunta kami sa supermarket, pinakyaw namin lahat ng bigas, tinapay, bigas, sardines and we went over to Pateros and distributed the goods there,” he said.

Ramsay said Reyes’ personal experience when “Ondoy” hit Metro Manila in September 2009 was the reason she did not hesitate to join him in this endeavor.

Almost four years ago, Reyes was among those who got stranded inside her house in Marikina while waiting for rescue.

Gripped with terror, Reyes at the time appealed for help on national television as she and her family remained trapped on their rooftop for hours as the water continued to rise.

She was eventually rescued by actor Richard Gutierrez, and her story even landed on a newspaper in the United States.

“She’s traumatized by what happened during [Ondoy] that’s why she of all people really wants to give back because pinagdaanan niya talaga. Nasa bubong na siya noon and she had to be rescued by boat. So when I asked her, automatically okay na siya,” Ramsay said.

The actor said he and Reyes chose to distribute Pateros.

“I do a lot of work in Pateros. They kind of get overlooked and maraming parts ang tabing ilong doon. Maraming nabiktima na pinagkasya lang sa basketball court. I saw that a lot of efforts are being put into different areas but nothing yet for Pateros so pumunta ako doon at tinulungan sila,” he said.

Ramsay said this is just their way of giving back to the people.

“Nawalan na sila ng bahay pero when I went there, nabuhayan sila. Smiles and they want to come up to me and say hi. Isang hello, isang bati mo lang, okay na ang araw nila. That’s an amazing feeling. I’ll continue giving back to the society because the society has given so much to me,” he said.

Meanwhile, aside from Ramsay and Reyes, celebrity doctor Vicki Belo has also launched a relief drive for storm-hit residents in Laguna.

“Ang dami talagang nangangailangan so we coordinated with the Land Rover group of the Philippines. I’m so happy kasi so many people helped. It’s really a bayanihan effort,” she said.

While she is happy that many are willing to lend a hand, Belo said it is still sad that Filipinos have to deal with this kind of calamities every year.

“I’m not happy doing this because this shouldn’t have happened. Sana hindi tayo nagfa-flood. But we are happy kasi are dry. I’m so happy kasi friends of Cristalle (Henares, her daughter) and some of our endorsers have come to help. Yesterday actually ang dami,” she said.

Belo said their relief goods would be distributed at a hospital in Sta. Rosa, Laguna and another nearby Laguna town.

Among those who helped Belo and Henares were Ruffa Gutierrez, Dyan Castillejo and Rhian Ramos.