June 4, 2023

Through an approved resolution, the city council implored all universities and colleges to continuously monitor stranded students and provide them relief assistance amid the enhanced community quarantine.

Councilor Levy Lloyd Orcales, Sangguniang Kabataan Federation president and chairperson of the committee on youth welfare and sports development, urged all schools to intensify their programs in identifying and helping their students who are stranded in the city during the community quarantine period.

Orcales lauded the efforts of Saint Louis University and other schools in initiating their own relief operations for their students.

He said SLU had sought help from the SKF for the distribution of food packs. The SK volunteers, in partnership with the Philippine Red Cross-Baguio City Chapter, delivered 500 relief packs prepared by SLU to stranded students.

Orcales also led the conduct of a census to identify stranded students in the city.

The SK president instructed all SK chairpersons to lead in identifying stranded students and help them seek relief from their respective barangays.

Orcales said his office identified 1,066 stranded students all over the city. The list includes the students’ Baguio and provincial addresses, contact numbers, and schools.

He also informed the august body that he already sent to every concerned barangay the list of stranded students within their respective areas.

“Many of them are distressed and are under poor condition. We interviewed one of them and he said he eats only once a day because his parents in the province can no longer afford to send him money,” Orcales said.

The youth representative added there are possible similar cases among the 1,066 identified stranded students.

City Social Welfare and Development Officer Betty Fangasan assured the city council she will coordinate with the barangay officials to ensure that stranded students are prioritized in the next release of food packs which will start this first week of April.

Orcales said the SKF must use its funds in providing additional assistance to the distressed students on top of the food packs provided by the city government through the CSWDO until the city finds a way to transport them to their respective hometowns/provinces.

“There are still no travel arrangements for these stranded students, but in the meantime, we will use the SK funds to send additional aid to them,” Orcales said.

Only 40 out of 128 SK barangay budgets have been approved to date, Orcales reported. He requested the Local Finance Committee for the swift approval of the 88 remaining SK barangay budgets.

City Budget Officer Leticia Clemente urged the SKF to expedite the preparation of their budgets for review. – Jordan G. Habbiling