Monthly Archives: November 2013

Relief Operations that have not Relieved Yolanda Victims

by Mary Ann

“My dear country, you are made up of more than 40 thousand barangays! How can you prosper if your unit in-charge will discriminate helpless citizens for reasons involving personal interests and political alliances?” – my wailing in my fb account

On Relief Operations

The interview of Rep. Lucy Torres-Gomez had evoked a long-buried, intended-to-be-forgotten pessimism over the plight of the country in the hands of our very own people we elected as our leaders. lucy torres on relief op

We call it relief operation.  People and governments send their help in cash or in kind to agencies they believed will bring such donations to the victims to relieve them of their hunger, thirst, coldness and sorrow, how difficult the ways will be to reach each one of them.  True enough, we can see, even only on aired or printed reports, government and non-government organizations mobilizing the relief operations.

Four days with nothing.  Many victims claim this fact. How can this be possible with the goods in packs and sacks in many areas.  How can all these goods we see on TV reach the victims who have nothing for days.  It’s unthinkable, at least from our end who are not there in site but tried as much to extend help in our little ways.

On Politicking

So the primary culprits are our barangay officials.  At least this is how it is with the account of Rep. Lucy.  And this is so possible with the way things are done at our own barangays, under normal circumstances.

Have you heard of a licensed professional (teacher, nurse, police, engineer) who is to obtain a certification from a local politician as an endorsement and attachment in an application for a local government job for without it s/he can not be prioritized?

Where is the spirit of bayanihan among the local leaders? Various media, local and international, report the efforts done by people from all walks of life in different parts of the globe just so each with the intent to help can somehow reach the helpless victims of the strongest typhoon that ever made a landfall on earth.

Sadly, for us Filipinos, the major value orientations of particularism, personalism, and non-rationalism are at work to the fullest. And no other than the Yolanda victims are twice, if not in multiples, subjected to tempests in real human-made forms.

While relinquishing their rightful duties and obligations (as they should) to  the constituents, many local (national even) leaders are over mindful of their future in politics so that they had to print their names on labels of relief goods for distribution.  Isn’t it that true service is without counting of efforts.  Besides, “to serve” is the mantra our leaders have when they run for office and the mandate they take oath upon when they won.
Sigh.  When will we ever change?  Maybe if project Genesis actually happens and only the selected few with the best persona will remain and rebuild the world into what it should really be.  Far from what it is today. #AnnDaclan

PPA 2014 Annual Scientific Conference

by Mary Ann

Below is the Call for Abstracts’ poster by the Philippine Population Association (PPA) for its annual scientific conference set at Holiday Inn, Clark, Pampanga.


Demographers, social scientists, academicians, other professionals and students around the country (and abroad) engaged in population-related activities are expected to attend the said event.

Deadline for submission of abstracts is extended to 18 November 2013.

Undeniably the Happiest Pinoy at Anytime!

by Mary Ann

He is the father of Brina Kei Maxino.


So, who on earth is  Brina Kei Maxino? The second child among three daughter-children of the father above, Brina was born with Trisomy 21 or Down Syndrome BUT managed to emerge victorious despite the disability.

As just shown on Magpakailanman, a show on GMA hosted by Mel Tiangco,  despite her health condition Brina was able to enroll in school with the rest of the children her age.  And she graduated as high school Valedictorian!

I was really mesmerized as I watched the show and I couldn’t stop myself from googling about Brina and her father.  True enough I was able to see and read great stories about them and their achievements.

Undeniably, it is the family’s positive attitude, optimistic nature and joyful relationship that fueled Brina’s optimum development.

Parents can learn a lot from Brina’s story.  How crucial is our role as parents in allowing our children’s potentials reach the apex.  Unconditional love to our children is paramount. It is non-negotiable.  And aside from its natural existence within our hearts, it takes efforts for us to maintain it and manifest it in our words and actions on a daily basis.  This is true to children without any disability, truer to those with disability.

It doesn’t go unnoticed in the show how the family braved life’s challenges with strong faith.  Members of the family did not just depend on each others’ goodness and strength but more on the power above and beyond them.

The Maxino story should encourage every parent in the grueling tasks of parenting children in whatever situation they are into.

Lupang Hinirang in Spanish (Tierra adorada)


Tierra adorada 

Hija del sol de Oriente, 
Su fuego ardiente 
En ti latiendo está. 

¡Tierra de amores! 
Del heroísmo cuna, 
Los invasores 
No te hollarán jamás. 

En tu azul cielo, en tus auras, 
En tus montes y en tu mar 
Esplende y late el poema 
De tu amada libertad. 

Tu pabellón, que en las lides 
La Victoria iluminó, 
No verá nunca apagados 
Sus estrellas ni su sol. 

Tierra de dichas, del sol y amores, 
En tu regazo dulce es vivir. 
Es una Gloria para tus hijos, 
Cuando te ofenden, por ti morir.

Yolanda: A Given Name Now Feared by Many

by Mary Ann

With an international codename Haiyan and locally called Yolanda, this name will be remembered in history as the strongest typhoon the world has ever have, at least until 7 November 2013.

Yolanda has also been used as a name just 3 years ago to a non-tropical cyclone that struck and flooded eastern Europe in 2010.

Looking at the map made by Rappler, one can see why this typhoon is described as the strongest one ever that hit the world. It is even stronger than “Pablo,” destroyed properties and ended lives in most parts of Visayas and Mindanao in December 2012. Barely a year from that experience and here is Yolanda. It must be noted that Visayas has just been lambasted weeks ago by a strong earthquake and still recuperating from the losses and now here is the strongest storm. The typhoon has such a wide scope that ranking of signals reaches to 4 and involving the whole country in various signal.


This afternoon, the Department of Education in Iligan City already released a directive of “no school” tomorrow, Friday, 8 November 2013.

Prayer brigades have been started in various social media.

Local residents can not help but compare typhoons Sendong, Pablo and this coming Yolanda. While conversing and recalling events, there is that inevitable tinge of apprehension and fear.

Outside rain falls with mild strength like that of an attacking soldier in a war and withdrawing after a while, then silence in drizzling then relaxed rain…

It will help if we visualize a peaceful evening free from storm. This may give the impression to Yolanda that she is ignored and unwanted she has to stay away.

God bless us all.

Where to Go During an Earthquake

by Mary Ann

The country Philippines has had typhoons all year round named from letters A to Z. Typhoons are quite predictable, but not the earthquakes. Lately, the centuries-old churches in Bohol were destroyed by a really strong earthquake.

When the Bohol earthquake occurred, here in Iligan City there was also that shake at the same time. As it happened, I was gripped with fear watching at my 3 kids while my mind’s trying to figure out what will I do to keep us all safe. The triangle principle during earthquake came to mind.

I remember receiving an email int he past about earthquake and how it’s supposed to be dealt with.

For a long time, it is engraved in my mind that we need to look for a sturdy table to hide beneath, open areas to run to, and the like. But the triangle principle debunks the below the table instruction.

Here is that email. Presented below is an EXTRACT FROM DOUG COPP’S ARTICLE ON ‘THE TRIANGLE OF LIFE’

My name is Doug Copp. I am the Rescue Chief and Disaster Manager of the American Rescue Team International (ARTI ), the world’s most experienced rescue team. The information in this article will save lives in an earthquake.

I have crawled inside 875 collapsed buildings, worked with rescue teams from 60 countries, founded rescue teams in several countries, and I am a member of many rescue teams from many countries. I was the United Nations expert in Disaster Mitigation for two years, and have worked at every major disaster in the world since 1985, except for simultaneous disasters.

The first building I ever crawled inside of was a school in Mexico City during the 1985 earthquake. Every child was under its desk. Every child was crushed to the thickness of their bones. They could have survived by lying down next to their desks in the aisles. It was obscene — unnecessary.

Simply stated, when buildings collapse, the weight of the ceilings falling upon the objects or furniture inside crushes these objects, leaving a space or void next to them – NOT under them. This space is what I call the ‘triangle of life’. The larger the object, the stronger, the less it will compact. The less the object compacts, the larger the void, the greater the probability that the person who is using this void for safety will not be injured. The next time you watch collapsed buildings, on television, count the ‘triangles’ you see formed. They are everywhere. It is the most common shape, you will see, in a collapsed building.


1) Most everyone who simply ‘ducks and covers’ when building collapse are crushed to death. People who get under objects, like desks or cars, are crushed.

2) Cats, dogs and babies often naturally curl up in the fetal position. You should too in an earthquake. It is a natural safety/survival instinct. You can survive in a smaller void. Get next to an object, next to a sofa, next to a bed, next to a large bulky object that will compress slightly but leave a void next to it.

3) Wooden buildings are the safest type of construction to be in during an earthquake. Wood is flexible and moves with the force of the earthquake. If the wooden building does collapse, large survival voids are created. Also, the wooden building has less concentrated, crushing weight. Brick buildings will break into individual bricks. Bricks will cause many injuries but less squashed bodies than concrete slabs.

4) If you are in bed during the night and an earthquake occurs, simply roll off the bed. A safe void will exist around the bed. Hotels can achieve a much greater survival rate in earthquakes, simply by posting a sign on the back of the door of every room telling occupants to lie down on the floor, next to the bottom of the bed during an earthquake.

5) If an earthquake happens and you cannot easily escape by getting out the door or window, then lie down and curl up in the fetal position next to a sofa, or large chair.

6) Most everyone who gets under a doorway when buildings collapse is killed. How? If you stand under a doorway and the doorjamb falls forward or backward you will be crushed by the ceiling above. If the door jam falls sideways you will be cut in half by the doorway. In either case, you will be killed!

7) Never go to the stairs. The stairs have a different ‘moment of frequency’ (they swing separately from the main part of the building). The stairs and remainder of the building continuously bump into each other until structural failure of the stairs takes place. The people who get on stairs before they fail are chopped up by the stair treads – horribly mutilated. Even if the building doesn’t collapse, stay away from the stairs. The stairs are a likely part of the building to be damaged. Even if the stairs are not collapsed by the earthquake, they may collapse later when overloaded by fleeing people. They should always be checked for safety, even when the rest of the building is not damaged.

8) Get near the outer walls of buildings or outside of them if possible – It is much better to be near the outside of the building rather than the interior. The farther inside you are from the outside perimeter of the building the greater the probability that your escape route will be blocked.

9) People inside of their vehicles are crushed when the road above falls in an earthquake and crushes their vehicles; which is exactly what happened with the slabs between the decks of the Nimitz Freeway. The victims of the San Francisco earthquake all stayed inside of their vehicles. They were all killed. They could have easily survived by getting out and sitting or lying next to their vehicles. Everyone killed would have survived if they had been able to get out of their cars and sit or lie next to them. All the crushed cars had voids 3 feet high next to them, except for the cars that had columns fall directly across them.

10) I discovered, while crawling inside of collapsed newspaper offices and other offices with a lot of paper, that paper does not compact. Large voids are found surrounding stacks of paper.

Spread the word and save someone’s life…

The entire world is experiencing natural calamities so be prepared!

‘We are but angels with one wing, it takes two to fly’

In 1996 we made a film, which proved my survival methodology to be correct. The Turkish Federal Government, City of Istanbul, University of Istanbul Case Productions and ARTI cooperated to film this practical, scientific test. We collapsed a school and a home with 20 mannequins inside. Ten mannequins did ‘duck and cover,’ and ten mannequins I used in my ‘triangle of life’ survival method. After the simulated earthquake collapse we crawled through the rubble and entered the building to film and document the results. The film, in which I practiced my survival techniques under directly observable, scientific conditions , relevant to building collapse, showed there would have been zero percent survival for those doing duck and cover.

There would likely have been 100 percent survivability for people using my method of the ‘triangle of life.’ This film has been seen by millions of viewers on television in Turkey and the rest of Europe, and it was seen in the USA , Canada and Latin America on the TV program Real TV.

Subject: Save your life with “The Triangle of Life”

“Triangle of Life”:

Without listening or reading, simply by looking at the following self-explanatory photos, you can learn more than in a thousand words about how to protect yourself during a major earthquake…

pic1 pic2 pic3 pic4 pic5
If you are inside a vehicle, come out and sit or lie down next to it. If something falls on the vehicle, it will leave an empty space along the sides. See below:
pic6 pic7 pic8 pic9 pic10 pic11

Source:國際救援小組(ARTI),網址: <>

American Rescue Team International(ARTI)is said to be the World’s most experienced rescue team and disaster management-mitigation organization.