Kasama Masthead

KASAMA means friend, companion, comrade...

KASAMA October 2009
Volume 23 Number 3


As we were about to wrap up the September, 3rd Qtr. 2009 issue of Kasama, Typhoon Ondoy (international name: Ketsana) hit the Philippines with 85kph winds on September 26th. About 16.7 inches (42.4 centimetres) – more than the month’s average total of rain – fell in just twelve hours causing the worst floods Manila has experienced since 1967. Then, on October 1, with parts of the capital still under floodwater, Typhoon Pepeng (Parma) snaked its way northwest from Samar, to pass over the Cordillera and the far north of Luzon by October 4, and eventually moved off toward the South China Sea by October 9. The third incident, Typhoon Santi (Mirinae) made landfall on October 31 in Quezon Province with 150kph winds, but thankfully did not linger and was downgraded to a tropical storm as it moved back out to sea.


Belle Uy A migrant Filipina’s reflections on her encounter with Ondoy

by Belle Uy

On September 26, 2009, Typhoon Ondoy (international name: Ketsana) brought a month’s worth of rainfall to Metro Manila and nearby areas in just a few hours, causing severe flooding which resulted in the loss of 246 lives and the displace­ment of over half a million Filipinos in the Luzon region. The cost of damages to property and crops by Ondoy has also risen to P4.69 billion, according to the National Disaster Coordinating Council. (Source: ABS–CBN NEWS 29 September 2009)


Walden Bello Citizens’ Disaster Response Center

The CDRC is an NGO registered as a non-profit, non-stock social development agency and is licensed and accredited to implement relief, rehabilitation, preparedness and mitigation programs. CDRC pioneered & continues to promote community based disaster management in the Philippines. CDRC operates nationwide through a network of regional centers affiliated with the Citizens’ Disaster Response Network and through people’s organizations.

Tublay, Benguet (Photo: Mikara Kaye Jubay) The Igorot in the midst of cyclones Ketsana and Parma:
A cursory look on vulnerability, resilience and ethnic solidarity

by Gino Orticio

Barely a week after tropical cyclone Ketsana, with local codename Ondoy, struck southern Luzon, tropical cyclone Parma (Pepeng) unleashed its torrential rains over northern Luzon. Typhoons in the country usually take only a day to pass through the Philippines, but Parma took an erratic path that meandered and struck Luzon on three different occasions in five days. These two typhoons rendered the island of Luzon in a state of calamity.

Cordillera Disaster Response NetworkServe the People Brigade

Cordillera Disaster Response Network

Cordillera Peoples Alliance (CPA) and the Center for Development Programs in the Cordillera (CDPC) organized a disaster response body composed of its network of organizations, which is the Serve the People Brigade–Cordillera Disaster Response Network. The name is historic, as it is derived from the disaster response initiatives of Cordillera activists during the 1972 floods and the killer quake in July 1990. This response is also rooted in the indigenous tradition of cooperation and collective action in times of disaster or in emergency situations.


Giving Notebooks to Elementary Students Report: Notebook Lessons

by Dr. Ferdinand C. Llanes
October 17, 2009

National disaster fills the regional media with news of large-scale relief operations so big that individuals can lose sight of what can be achieved by small teams of highly motivated people who perceive a need and mobilise to do something about it. In difficult situations schools are often the only haven of normality in children’s lives.


UN UN to raise aid for typhoon-ravaged RP beyond original USD74-M commitment

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

MANILA (PNA) — A senior official of the United Nations has pledged to work for the increase of humanitarian assistance to typhoon-ravaged Philippines beyond the UN’s original commitment of USD74 million, even as he noted that so far, the campaign netted just USD19 million or USD55 million short.

MANILA, Oct. 30 (PNA) — The Australian Government is granting the Philippines a P17-million early cyclone warning system, through the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa), Australian Ambassador to the Philippines Rod Smith announced on Friday.

Partido ng Manggagawa Logo Anti-poor rationalization for natural disasters

Workers’ Digest Issue No. 29, October 2009
Published by Partido ng Manggagawa

THERE IS A TRUE EXPLANATION to why the recent typhoons wrecked such havoc on the Philippines. And there is a humane way to undertake relief and reconstruction efforts.


Suriin ang Kahirapan Map An Investigative Homecoming

By Alex Tizon

I am an American journalist here in the Philippines to work on a ground-breaking media project involving the poorest of the poor. I’d like to tell you about it. But I’d be lying if I said I was here only as an altruist. I’m also here for selfish reasons: to experience life in the country where I was born.


Suriin ang Kahirapan Masthead Suriin ang Kahirapan

About 1 in every 10 Filipinos, or 10 percent of the total 90 million population – survives on just $1 per day, while another 41.2 percent on less than $2 daily, according to the World Bank. It also notes that the poverty situation in the Philippines is worse than in other countries of the Southeast Asian region.


Do-It-Yourself Investigation Pride and Poverty

by Alex Tizon

Dipolog, Zamboanga Del Norte: I was expecting a city of shanties. A sprawling ghetto. A legion of beggars stumbling around a sagging town square. But I found none of these things in Dipolog City, the capital of Zamboanga del Norte, said to be the poorest province in the Philippines.


Masbate Guns, Goons and Gold

by Alex Tizon

Masbate: This is supposed to be the geographic center of the Philippines, but it’s also one of the wildest and poorest places in this poor and unruly nation. Here I met widows of murder victims, with fish-less fisherfolk and destitute gold miners. I also met a governor who is nice enough, but may need to get more acquainted with her own province.


Stop Laiban Dam 9-day march vs. Laiban Dam set

28 October 2009, Quezon City

Barely two weeks after the devastating floods and controversial dam releases of Typhoon Pepeng, various groups from Metro Manila, Quezon, and Rizal are bracing themselves for their own battle against the construction of yet another giant dam.


Carlo Butalid On OFs Building Houses in the Philippines

By Carlo Butalid

8 May 2009
Some weeks ago, I read a news item about a Filipino from Canada who was killed because he wanted to sell the house he built in the Philippines. A relative was staying in the house, but did not take good care of it. When he tried to dispose of it, he got killed.


The 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT6 – Brisbane, Australia) The 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT6 – Brisbane, Australia)

5 December 2009 – 5 April 2010
Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art on the South Bank of the Brisbane River

The sixth exhibition in the Gallery’s Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art series will occupy the entire Gallery of Modern Art as well as the iconic Watermall and adjoining galleries at the Queensland Art Gallery.

APT6 will include the work of more than 100 artists from 25 countries, including collaborations and collectives, which reflect the diversity of practices across Asia, the Pacific and Australia.


The 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art (APT6 – Brisbane, Australia) Subanen Handmade Christmas Cards

$20 per pack of 10 Handmade Cards
5 unique designs

Creation Christmas Cards are handcrafted by disadvantaged Subanen women who live in the mountains of northwest Mindanao in the Philippines. They have carefully hand folded images of Christmas within an embossed globe showing continents of Africa, South America and Antarctica. Subanen Crafters are now able to provide proper food, education and healthcare for their families from the sale of these cards.


CATWA Logo The Price of Pleasure: The Real Cost of Pornography

A documentary screening and panel discussion hosted by the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women Australia (CATWA)
Wednesday, 2nd December 2009 - 6.00 pm to 8.30 pm

Pornography has become mainstream and ubiquitous, but its content has also become more and more violent and degrading. The Price of Pleasure (2008) examines this troubling trend and how it affects our sexuality and relationships.