AETAS in Porac, Pampanga who were traumatized by the 6.1 magnitude earthquake that struck Luzon last week refuse to stay in concrete evacuation centers, according to Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Deputy Secretary General Dr. Susan Mercado.
“The Aetas refuse to stay in any type of concrete evacuation center as they are traumatized by the shaking. There are also those with pre-existing mental health issues who are further triggered into depression and anxiety,” Mercado said in a Facebook post.
The team of Mercado that went to the community had provided welfare services to 55 families or a total of 207 individuals.
PRC chairman Richard Gordon called for unity in helping the victims of the strong earthquake regardless of their race.
“It is important that we work together in this time of need. The Red Cross is supporting government efforts to alleviate the suffering of people who lost their friends and families and the population who were forced to flee their homes regardless of their race,” he said.
Last Friday, PRC visited Sitio Pasubul in Barangay Camias in Porac to distribute hygiene kits to 60 indigenous families to protect them from infections and diseases.
As such, the local chapter provided hot meals to 450 individuals.
“We focus on the immediate needs of the most vulnerable and we will continue to provide services with the support of our volunteers and donors,” Gordon said.
The humanitarian organization partnered with the Department of Health to provide psychosocial support to the survivors, mostly employees of the collapsed Chuzon supermarket, and the families of those who died.