MANILA, Philippines – A total of 25 babies who are residents of Cribs, an orphanage in Marikina City, have been evacuated to safer grounds.
The babies were brought to their temporary home at the Ateneo University’s Loyola School of Theology in Quezon City. They will stay there until the situation normalizes in Marikina.
“My heart really goes out to them whether there’s a disaster or not,” said Cribs board member Joselito Rivera.
The orphanage is situated near the Marikina River.
A state of calamity was also declared in the city.
The toddlers were unaffected by the tragedy and seemed to be enjoying the change in the scenery.
Volunteers rushed to the school upon hearing the news of the little evacuees. They are now helping take care of the babies.
“We were concerned sa mga babies if they have enough materials and supplies,” said volunteer Carissa Lim.
Aside from the volunteers, donations in the form of diapers, clothes, milk, and toys also poured in for the little ones.
The management of the orphanage are finding ways to keep the children safe especially with the rainy season.
“Pinagaralan namin kung anong pwedeng gawin. Ang iniisip namin magtayo ng building para less vulnerable. But of course, it’s going to take a lot of financial resources. Kailangan naming magisip ng paraan at humingi ng tulong,” Rivera added.
Breastmilk for babies
Breastfeeding advocates are now collecting breastmilk for babies who are currently staying in evacuation centers.
Breastmilk can be donated at the PGH Milk Bank in Manila or at the Medela House at No. 29, 1st Street, New Manila, Quezon City.
Maricel Cua of Medela Moms, which operates the Medela House, said donors can drop off their breastmilk donations from Monday to Friday at 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and on Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. They can also call 0917-5614366 for an appointment.
“We will bring it to PGH to be pasteurized. Breastmilk is much healthier than if you give formula,” said Cua.
Meanwhile, Australian aid agency Save the Children Philippines estimated that 240,000 children have been forced to evacuate from their homes as floods swept across Metro Manila.
"Our teams have been out in the floodwaters, assessing the needs of the families affected so that we can rapidly scale up our response to get help to children. Thousands have taken shelter at evacuation centres and desperately need warm clothes, blankets, clean water and soap, in particular for the youngest children who are especially vulnerable,” said Save the Children Philippines Country Director Anna Lindenfors in Manila. With a report from Bernadette Sembrano, ABS-CBN News