February 3, 2023

The University of the Philippines Baguio went on another relief drive for its stranded students on May 12, its seventh food pack distribution since mid-March, when the national government declared a Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine due to the coronavirus disease-2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

Spearheaded by the Task Force UPB Cares, the university distributed food packs donated by the Christ Commission Fellowship, in coordination with UP Baguio faculty member Jermaine Beltran. The Sigma Beta sorority also donated food packs for UPB job order employees.

Beltran coordinated one distribution route, while another was led by UPB Health Services Office head Dr. Ronald Hidalgo and Office of Student Affairs staff Frederick Pedregoza. Administrative staff Ronald Abarra and JR Aguilar provided support in the distribution activity.

The food packs were sent to different areas in Baguio where the students reside, such as Green Valley, Crystal Cave, Bakakeng Norte, Camp 8, Aurora Hill, Brookside, Holy Ghost, and Laubach Road, Engineer’s Hill, and the UPB Residence Hall.

To date, there are more than 170 UPB students who remained in Baguio after classes in all levels were suspended because of the quarantine.

Task Force UPB Cares member and head of UP Baguio’s Ugnayan ng Pahinungod Prof. Doris Wilson said some of these students come from places as far as Agusan and Negros provinces, the Bicol region, and Palawan.

Aside from food aid by TF UPB Cares, Task Force Out of Baguio also coordinates the transport of students going home to their provinces and hometowns.

Wilson said some students who remained in Baguio are under the care of relatives, while some are with continued support remotely from their families.

Wilson said the university continues to monitor the wellbeing of all stranded UPB students to ensure that they are cared for in this crisis situation. – Roland Rabang