GK’s Bayani Challenge goes to Siargao

SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews / 25 March) – More than 1,000 volunteers trooped to Siargao Island over the weekend to take part in Gawad Kalinga’s Bayani Challenge 2013 to build houses for the poor in the municipality of Del Carmen, Surigao del Norte.

Aimed to build duplex houses in five days, the said activity will benefit villagers whose current houses are located in disaster-prone areas.

Volunteers from local government units (LGU), religious groups, national government agencies and educational institutions are taking part in the five-day build that started last Saturday.

According to Del Carmen Mayor Alfredo Coro Jr., the town will be recipient of 169 duplex houses at the Gawad Kalinga Site in Barangay Lobogon, although 35 are expected to be completed on Wednesday.

The mayor said the volunteers for the “Bayani Challenge 2013: Isang Bayan, Isang Bayanihan” come from all over – Butuan, Manila, Cebu, Siargao, Surigao, Tandag, Singapore and even from the United States.

Tony Meloto, executive director of Gawad Kalinga, said materials for each house costs P90,000, but the labor will be provided by the volunteers.

He said similar activities are being held in 33 other provinces all over the country, including those affected by super typhoon Pablo in Agusan del Sur and Davao Oriental.

Aside from building houses, the mayor said there were other activities being held during the five-day build. These include a climate change adaptation forum by Climate Change Secretary Lucille Sering, a fun run and surfing clinic. (Roel N. Catoto / MindaNews)