MULTIMEDIA

The other side of Manila Bay

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 20 2019 04:19 AM | Updated as of Feb 21 2019 05:35 AM

While tourists view the baywalk area as the poster image of Manila Bay, other stories unfold on Barangay 649 Engineer’s Island, informally known as the Baseco compound.

The Baseco community has mushroomed on the shores in Tondo. 

Aside from getting their livelihood from the bay, residents of the community have learned to adapt to their environment. You can find junk shops, variety stores, computer shops and even karaoke bars in Baseco.

Here are images on the life on the other side of Manila Bay.

Families gather by the Baseco beach in Tondo in the afternoon to watch the famous Manila Bay sunset. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

The people are either unaware or just don't mind the health hazard posed by swimming in the waters of Manila Bay. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

For children who grew up in Baseco, the sand and the beach there is their playground. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Despite the dangers, people continue to erect houses on the breakwater for lack of options. January 31, 2019. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Boats are a common transport for the houses propped above the water by stilts. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Children walk to school located inside the Baseco compound. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Children play at the breakwater at day's end. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Benjie and Marycris settle with their family inside one of the shacks in Baseco. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Marycris tends to her kids inside the cramp space theycall home. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Marycris shows pictures of herself and Benjie when they first met and fell in love. They now have two daughters to take care of. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Families fear for their future as they learned of efforts by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to rehabilitate the bay. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

In early December 2018, DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu said Manila Bay remains unsafe for swimming because of the high levels of pollution caused by trash and other kinds of waste dumped by informal settlers in Metro Manila. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Benjie admits they have no choice to move out when authorities ask them to. But he appeals for his family to be given decent relocation. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Meanwhile, life goes on for residents of Baseco, with local businesses supporting the community. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

There are even internet shops that give Baseco residents connectivity. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Even informal settlers have 'fast food'. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Businesses range from watering holes to karaoke bars for recreation. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

A resident washes dishes inside their toilet-cum-shower in one of the houses at Baseco. The hole on the floor drains directly to the ocean, a common practice in the area. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Residents admit they are guilty of throwing waste into the ocean. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

The same water is the source of livelihood for some living in Baseco. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

A fisherman dives for seafood along the shore of Baseco beach. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

A fisherman shows the day's catch harvested from the waters near Baseco. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

The catch ranges from mussels to crabs that live on the rocks near the breakwater. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Children learn the trade early in their life, as they forage for food near the same shore littered with trash. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Residents ride a makeshift boat near the breakwater to fish and transport people. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

A fisherman casts his net from a small raft. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Children sift through the mounds of trash that have washed ashore the Baseco beach for something they can salvage for junk. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Whether for livelihood or as a playground, children living near the Baseco beach have learned to live with the trash around them. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

A large portion of the shore has been cleared of trash as the rehabilitation of manila Bay gaets underway. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

The fate of the community that relies on the waters of Manila Bay hangs in the balance. George Calvelo, ABS-CBN News

Epilogue: On February 18, 2019 residents trooped to Manila Bay to protest the impending reclamation project. ABS-CBN News

Epilogue: On February 18, 2019 residents trooped to Manila Bay to protest the impending reclamation plan. ABS-CBN News