NHA Christmas at 40


NHA Christmas at 40
The many colors of Christmas. This grandest day - Christmas comes but once a year. But the colors that they bring mean peace, love, joy and goodwill to the lives of the Filipinos... Let us make God’s gift this Christmas
a colorful one... (Photo by Gavin P. Corpuz)
Christmas and the Filipino Family
Christmas is upon us once more! The excitement and joy once again fill the air
in preparation for this much-awaited occasion. Let us again be reminded of the
reason for this season, and that is the GRANDEST OF ALL, despite its humble
beginning. . . . when the Christ Child was born in a lowly manger in a little town
in Bethlehem which heralded the salvation of mankind.
We cannot thank the Lord enough for He is our wonderful counselor, Prince
of Peace and our great COMFORTER. This relationship with our LORD can be
made visible if we continue to thank HIM with a grateful heart for the attributions
and blessings HE so generously bestowed on us.
The Belen, a traditional Christmas decoration, is a reminder that truly represents
the meaning of Christmas: the Holy Family in a stable with Jesus lying in a manger
and with people from all walks of life paying tribute for His being born.
The Holy Family bears close affinity with the Filipino family. While the Holy
family sought shelter to have the distinct honor of delivering the Savior to the world,
the Filipino family has been seeking shelter to nurture the respective members of
their brood to enable them to become productive members of society. Therefore, as
one of the key officers of the NHA, and with
the able support from the NHA community, I
am honored of NHA’s role of shelter provision
to the Filipino in need of homes and a new
beginning. It is like providing shelter to the
Holy Family themselves.
With the many challenges being faced by
the NHA at present such as climate change,
natural and man-made disasters and others, I
can say that I am pleased to be part of this
organization where we extend housing to
our underprivileged, homeless brothers and
sisters can be regarded as highly spiritual and
meaningful undertaking. We have already
done so much, but much work remains.
To all my NHA Family, may this Christmas
be a season of peace, joy, hope, and love and
may the New Year bring us all a renewed and
God-centered meaning as public servants.
Isaiah 9:6 for to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and
the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name
shall be called wonderful counselor, mighty god, everlasting
father, and prince of peace.
Assistant General Manager
NHA Christmas at 40
As Christmas day is coming, and before this year ends, let me thank
my fellow NHA employees in helping “build back better” the calamity
stricken communities in our country.
We have been doing this not so much because we are mandated to do so,
but because we have the hearts of real public servants for our countrymen.
In retrospect, we had many struggles this year but we have become
stronger as a national agency because of such challenges.
It is the season of Christmas. Let us celebrate not only as a government
institution, but as one family. We get strength and inspiration from one
another to work harder and better. This is reflected in our theme, “Samasama: Paskong Kay Saya Sa Puso ng Bawat Isa”.
Merry Christmas to one and all!
General Manager
New Permanent Shelters for Yolanda Survivors in Villa Diana, Brgy. New Kawayan, Tacloban City. (Photo courtesy of Visayas AMO)
Yolanda Housing Construction on Track: NHA
The government infrastructure projects
in areas hit by Typhoon Yolanda on
November 8, 2013 are on track. With
the continuous release of funds for the
construction of permanent shelters for
Typhoon Yolanda families, the National
Housing Authority (NHA) is able to deliver
a total of 12,635 ready for occupancy
housing units and 8,820 more housing
units to be completed before the end of
According to Housing and Urban
(HUDCC) Chair Atty. Chito M. Cruz,
“To better respond to the housing needs
of the calamity victims, particularly those
affected by Typhoon Yolanda, NHA, with
the help of DPWH, has developed standard
disaster-resilient housing designed to
withstand typhoon winds of 250kph. This
is in compliance with the instruction of
President Aquino to Build Back Better
communities for our beneficiaries.”
The said housing units constructed by the
NHA is in line with the build back better
principle. After the onslaught of Typhoon
Yolanda, housing needs for the Visayas’
14 provinces in the six (6) regions reached
205,128 housing units, with funding
requirement of Php 61.252 Billion.
As of 30 October 2015, the total fund
released for the resettlement site project
was Php 26.996 Billion to fund 92,554
housing units. Of these units, 17,641units
have been completed.
The NHA implemented housing projects
are complete with community facilities
and water and power lines. For Yolanda
housing sites, the NHA has allocated space
for school buildings, tricycle terminals,
police outpost, Materials Recovery
Facility (MRF), health center and covered
basketball court cum multi-purpose center.
Housing units will have individual septic
tanks/vault, and has a minimum lot size of
40 square meters, while loftable row house
will measure 22 square meters to follow
the loftable resilient housing design.
Amidst the immediate needs for
permanent shelter for typhoon survivors,
the government,especially the NHA is faced
with major challenges in implementing
the housing component for the Yolanda
rehabilitation. NHA General Manager Atty.
Sinforoso R. Pagunsan explained, “The
lack of available lands in safe zones, legal
concerns on titling properties, issuances
of permits/clearances, availability of raw
materials and inclement weather were the
hindering factors we had to face in all 14
name: “Haiyan”) ravaged the Visayas
winds of 315 kph, displaced 60,000
families and damaged approximately
infrastructures, social, productive, and
cross-sectoral resources.
Gov’t updates Media
on Yolanda Rehab Efforts
Three days before the two-year mark
of the onslaught of the Super Typhoon
Yolanda (international name: “Haiyan”)
in the Eastern Visayas region which left
14 provinces devastated in November
08, 2013, a joint press briefing was
conducted for the updates and status
of the Yolanda Rehabilitation Program
on November 5, 2015. This was
initiated by the National Economic and
Development Authority (NEDA) where
the Office of the Presidential Assistant
for Rehabilitation and Recovery
(OPARR), originally tasked to spearhead
the Yolanda Rehabilitation Program, was
The media briefing was attended by the
different agencies forming the five (5)
clusters of the Yolanda Comprehensive
Rehabilitation and Recovery Program
(CRRP). The briefing focused on
the Resettlement Cluster’s status of
constructions of the permanent shelter
for the survivors living in the typhoon-hit
areas. Prior the media briefing, Housing
and Urban Development Coordinating
Council (HUDCC) Chairperson Atty.
Chito M. Cruz said during the NHA 40th
Anniversary Gawad Parangal Night on
October 15, 2015 that the NHA, with the
help of DPWH, has developed standard
disaster-resilient housing designed to
withstand typhoon winds of 250kph.
This is in compliance with the instruction
of President Benigno S. Aquino III to
Build Back Better communities for the
Atty. Cruz reported that after the
Typhoon Yolanda ravaged the Eastern
Visayas region, the housing needs for
the 14 provinces in the six (6) affected
regions reached 205,128 housing units,
with a total funding requirement of Php
61.252 Billion. This will be developed
in 153 sites with 17,641 substantially
completed housing units as of the end
of October 2015. The Chairperson also
reported that as of October 30, 2015, a
total of Php 26.996 Billion was already
released to the NHA to fund the 92,554
housing units targeted to be finished by
December 2016.
Meanwhile, during the Kapihan sa
Media ng Bayan forum the following
day, November 6, 2015 at the Philippine
Information Agency (PIA) Building,
NHA GM Atty. Sinforoso R. Pagunsan
mentioned the major challenges faced by
the NHA in implementing the housing
component of the Yolanda Rehabilitation.
GM Pagunsan explained that the lack
of suitable lots is one of the toughest
challenges the Authority is facing, since
the NHA has to make sure that these lots
are located in safe zones and are away
from shores and fault lines. Nevertheless,
the General Manager, together with
Department of Budget and Management
Secretary, Florencio “Butch” Abad
assured everyone that the construction
of the permanent shelters in the typhoonstricken provinces are on-track.
Old School Gets a New
Lease on Life After Yolanda
years after Typhoon Yolanda,
Tapilon Central School in Daanbantayan,
Cebu is now a different school from the
crumbling century-old school that was
almost wiped out by the strongest typhoon
to ever hit land.
It now boasts of eight new climateresilient classrooms courtesy of the
Department of Public Works and Highways
(DPWH) and Ramon Aboitiz Foundation,
Inc. (RAFI), which rehabilitated and
upgraded three and five classrooms,
respectively. The classrooms have been
rebuilt to be strong enough to withstand
a 250-kilometer per hour wind velocity.
The school is now also not as flood-prone
as it was before, thanks to the project by
the Parents-Teachers’ Association (PTA)
to elevate the school grounds. Moreover,
the school community underwent a
disaster preparedness training courtesy
of the National Disaster Risk Reduction
Management Council (NDRRMC).
Post-Yolanda, water and sanitation were
greatly improved with new toilets which
have faucets in all the 13 new classrooms.
In addition to the eight classrooms already
mentioned, the Philippine Business for
Social Progress (PBSP) and Cebu’s
electric cooperative Acebeco sponsored
the rehabilitation of five other classrooms
(discussions are ongoing for two new
buildings as well). “Before, the toilets
didn’t even have faucets,” the teachers
said. The PTA also donated a deep well
to make sure the school has its own water
The school’s perimeter walls are
now brightly painted old rose pink and
decorated with rows of hanging vegetable
plants such as alugbati and camote tops.
There are also small patches of vegetable
gardens inside piles of rubber tires in the
school’s front yard.
“The school now looks better with bright
colors. The PTA undertook beautification
to revive the children’s interest in their
schooling,” said Grade 1 teacher Milagros
This is how they recall the aftermath of
Typhoon Yolanda: “Pupunta ka sa school,
walang school. Uuwi ka sa bahay, walang
bahay. Gusto mong magklase sa ilalim ng
Tapilon Elementary students enjoy the comfort of their new classrooms. Hanging vegetable garden
(below) beautify and adds color to the campus. (Photos courtesy of NEDA)
punongkahoy, walang punongkahoy. (You
go to school and there’s no school. You
go home and the house is gone. You want
to hold a class under a tree, but there’s no
tree.) ”
For a long time, everybody was in
deep shock. The students understandably
preferred the streets over the makeshift
tent classrooms they had because out
there, they could get their hands on relief
goods being distributed by the government
and concerned organizations. Besides, the
classrooms were not even offering real
lessons anymore, but really just served
more as day care centers for traumatized
children for a while. There were only half-
continued next page
NHA Creates Power, Water Task Team
The National Housing Authority,
pursuant to the NHA Board’s instructions
in a meeting held on October 09, 2015
created a Task Team on Power and Water
Connections in NHA Projects.
The Team will be headed by Project
Operation Support Services Office
(POSSO) Manager Engr. Ma. Otelia F.
Eclavea. Members of the team are: Ar. Ma.
Benita O. Regala, Housing Technology
Development Office (HTDO) Manager, Ar.
Marissa B. Maniquis, Corporate Planning
Office (CPO) Manager, and the Group
Managers from the Area Management
Offices (AMOs), namely, Engr. Victor C.
Balba, National Capital Region (NCR),
Engr. Felicisimo F. Lazarte Jr. (NCL),
Ar. Susana V. Nonato (SLB), Ms. Lorna
M. Seraspe (VMO), and Ar. Ma. Alma
T. Valenciano (MMO). NHA Chief of
Staff Atty. Rudolph S. Capuchino and
Consultant Ms. Gina T. Sanchez will also
serve as Observers for the Team.
The Task Team will be responsible for
tracking the progress of installation of
water and power supplies in identified
NHA projects. They shall also facilitate
immediate resolution of issues which
delay installation of power and water
connections, and submit to Management
regular monthly reports on the status of
power and water installation. Also, other
instructions from the Board Meeting
included the creation of a template to
determine what identified projects are
beyond the set standards, establishment
of a specific timeline in the installation
of power and water supplies, and the
inclusion of representatives from Meralco
and local water suppliers in the meetings
being conducted among NHA, Gabriela,
Anakpawis, and Kadamay.
Further, the POSSO was tasked to
provide secretariat support to the Task
Team, and assistance in the preparation
of the necessary documents, monitoring
agreements, and preparation of status
reports for submission to the Management.
MOU inked; Southville 8 Adopted
National Housing Authority, on
November 12, 2015 signed a Memorandum
of Understanding (MOU) with the Rotary
Club of Metro West Triangle, University
of the East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial
Medical Center, Inc. (UERMMMCI), and
the Rodriguez, Rizal LGU, adopting the
Southville 8 Resettlement Project in Brgy.
San Isidro, Rodriquez, Rizal under the
“Adopt a Community Project of NHA.”
The MOU signing was a prelude to
the renewal of the existing Memorandum
of Agreement (MOA) among the said
parties and will be used by the Rotary
Club of Metro West Triangle as supporting
document for their fund-raising activities
on programs and services on basic
education, health and nutrition, sanitation,
environmental protection, livelihood,
peace and order, and utilities.
Prior this, an assessment session
among the parties was facilitated by the
Community Relations and Information
Operations Department (CRIOD) on
September 22, 2015 where the parties
unanimously agreed to renew the existing
MOA for another three (3) years. It was
also agreed that after the MOU signing, a
strategic planning for 2016-2018 projects
and activities shall be conducted.
The MOU was signed by NHA General
Manager Atty. Sinforoso R. Pagunsan, Dr.
Samuel Vincent Yrastorza of the Rotary
Club of West Triangle, UERMMMCI
President Dr. Romeo A. Divinagracia, and
Mayor Cecilio Hernandez of Rodriguez,
Rizal, in the presence of Housing and
Urban Development Coordinating Council
(HUDCC) Chairperson Atty. Chito M.
Cruz, Rotary District 3780 Governor
Raynaldo David, and some representatives
from UERMMMCI and Rodriguez LGU.
Happy faces of San Juan Homeowners. They will occupy LRBs which will be their own homes in San
Juan City. (Photo by Gavin P. Corpuz)
San Juan City’s ISFs benefit from NHA LRBs
Former San Juan City Informal Settler
Families can now live comfortably in
their new abode at the newly constructed
St. Joseph Ville Low Rise Buildings
(LRBs), located at Barangay St. Joseph,
Pinaglabanan St., San Juan City.
On December 10, Thursday, 320 out of
348 total units were turned over to familybeneficiaries who also attended the Buyer’s
Orientation held earlier this year. On the
same date, a supplemental Memorandum
of Agreement (MOA) specifically for St.
Joseph LRB was signed between the NHA
and the San Juan City Local Government
The LRBs they will occupy will have an
average unit size of 24.sq.meter and will
be composed of five buildings (60 units
per building); and another building with 48
units. Each building has five floors. LRB
construction started last February 10, 2014.
Former Department of Interior and Local
Government (DILG) Secretary Manuel
“Mar” Roxas represented President
Benigno S. Aquino III during the turnover
and ribbon cutting ceremony. San Juan
City Mayor Guia G. Gomez, NHA General
Manager Atty. Sinforoso R. Pagunsan
and Housing and Urban Development
Coordinating Council (HUDCC) Chair
Atty. Chito M. Cruz graced the event. Senator
Joseph Victor G. Ejercito was also present
during the ribbon cutting ceremony.
We are ISO Ready
from page 2... Old School Gets a New Life After Yolanda
day instead of whole-day classes due to
lack of classrooms and other operational
difficulties. And for almost a year, there
would be no classes everytime it rained.
In early 2014, the Department of
Education undertook stress debriefing for
teachers and students, with the debriefing
for students taking a whole month. Several
Non-Government Organizations (NGOs)
including BASA Pilipinas, Bixbee and
PBSP also distributed backpacks and
school supplies to the students.
“The students are doing good now.
They come to school regularly. Their
performance are also back to the preYolanda level, in general. However, I
noticed that the best performers before
Yolanda happened did not quite go back to
their previous level of performance before
Yolanda. I hope that in time that will
happen,” said Petallo.
Carmel Masucol, 33, mother of five
students of the school, shared that the
grades of her children suffered in the
immediate aftermath of Yolanda. The
same also happened while the school was
undergoing construction in June 2014, but
that their grades have since improved.
Indeed, many parents observed that since
classes started in June 2015, with the new
and improved classrooms, their children’s
grades have significantly improved
compared to the previous year’s grades.
It certainly helped that in addition to
the improved school infrastructure, the
students of Tapilon Central School are
now enjoying their own textbooks and
learning materials, with a ratio of 1:1
except for Grade 3 learning materials and
Social Studies textbooks, unlike in the old
days when this was far from the case. To
date, DepEd has distributed 3,780,661
textbooks and learning materials and
339,745 learning kits to the Yolandaaffected schools.
“Pre-Yolanda, we used to reproduce
learning materials for students ourselves,
even paying for this out of our own
pockets,” Grade 5 teacher Limwel Rodrigo
Grade 3 teacher Rommel Dublin attended
Tapilon Elementary School himself, and
before him, his father did so as well. This
is also true for some of his fellow teachers.
The community is strongly connected with
the school that has been there for several
generations of local families and, before
Yolanda, had weathered many storms.
The few classrooms that survived Yolanda
naturally served as evacuation centers for
the teachers who lost their houses during
the crisis.
“There are actually more organizations
that were interested and willing to donate
buildings to the school but alas, there is no
more space,” Dublin said.
Thanks to the private sector, government,
and the community working together
and complementing each other’s efforts,
the teachers and students of Tapilon
Central School are now enjoying a much
improved learning environment, even
better than its pre-Yolanda situation. The
abundance of goodwill they received has
certainly helped the teachers and students
of this school move past the trauma from
Typhoon Yolanda.
Source: http://yolanda.neda.gov.ph
The NHA ISO core team is on its way of completing ISO report on readiness.
The NHA ISO Core Team, headed
by Quality Management Representative
(QMR) AGM Froilan R. Kampitan
and Deputy Quality Management
Representative and Corporate Operations
and Systems Office (COSO) Officer-inCharge, Mr. Renato Tengco are now beefing
up the documentation requirements for the
ISO report on readiness of the Authority.
As part of the said requirements, the team
conducted Internal Quality Audit (IQA) in
all the Departments and Area Management
Offices (AMOs) at the NHA Main Office
earlier this November 2015.
Deputy QMR Mr. Renato Tengco
reported that as of November, the team
was able to accomplish six (6) out of the
10 lined-up activities from the roadmap,
and that the remaining four (4) activities
are targeted for completion before the
year ends. The Core Team also conducted
training courses in partnership with the
Development Academy of the Philippines
(DAP) and secured Management approval
for the Quality Policy, the Process Map,
and the Quality Management System
(QMS) Structure. The NHA Quality
Manual and Quality Procedures were also
developed and as of now, are still subject
for approval of the QMS Committee and
the Top Management.
Mr. Tengco explains that in 2007,
Executive Order no. 605 was issued
requiring all government agencies,
to establish a Quality Management
System certifiable to ISO 9001:2008
in their respective agencies. This was
also included in the six-year Philippine
Development Plan of President Benigno S.
Aquino III. He further explained that the
establishment of the Quality Management
System certifiable to ISO 9001:2008 in
NHA was included by the Governance
Commission for Government-Owned and
Controlled Corporations (GCG) as a good
governance mandatory requirement.
Meanwhile, the IQA interviews
conducted by the Core Team in the different
Departments and AMOs in November
turned out productive. The findings were
generally categorized as Conformity (C),
with Opportunity for Improvement (OFI),
and Non-Conformity (NC), based on
the QMS Principles and Requirements
of the ISO 9001:2008. However, Mr.
Tengco cleared that even though the ISO
readiness for the Authority was targeted
for December 2015, the certification was
expected to be given by a third party
certifying body on July or August 2016.
In addition to this, the Departments and
AMOs which were issued OFIs and NonConformities during the IQA are required
to perform corrective actions. He also
assured that further Internal Quality Audits
will be conducted by 2016 to check for
these corrective actions and other matters
related to QMS.
Good News in the Regions
Duck, Cover
and Hold
@ Manggahan
Residences 1
Duck, cover and hold was the latest
safety drill the 120 Manggahan Residences
1 unit dwellers participated in, held
October 30-31, 2015.
The conduct of the Fire and Earth Quake
Drill was facilitated by the National
Housing Authority (NHA) and headed by
Mr. Arnel Condicion of the Pasig Rescue
Group with the assistance of the Barangay
Sta. Lucia Rescue Team. The two-day
session covered the orientation on the
history of the valley fault system, movement
of lands, earthquake-related hazards,
intensity/magnitude of earthquake, the dos
and don’ts during earthquakes and fire.
Ready with their disaster and emergency
bags, the residents evacuated the building
with their packed foods, water and
With the active involvement of unit
representatives namely Ms. Madeline
Suarez and Mr. Edwin H. Bercasio,
President Mr. Bernard Belmonte of
Alliance of Peoples’ Organization Along
Manggahan Floodway, the earthquake and
fire drill went well and was a success.
with UN Habitat
A Memorandum of Understanding
(MOU) was signed between the National
Housing Authority (NHA) and the United
Nations Human Settlement Programme
(UN Habitat) as an initial step to the pilot
implementation of the NHA’s CommunityBased Shelter and Livelihood (CBSL)
Program, last December 17 at the NHA
Board Room.
The MOU was signed by Atty. Sinforoso
R. Pagunsan, NHA General Manager,
and Mr. Christopher E. Rollo, Country
Programme Manager of UN Habitat.
“It is an honor and privilege to partner
with government in serving the people
affected by Typhoon Yolanda, to help
fast track the delivery of housing services
to the communities,” said Mr. Rollo.
Galing Mason Tooling Up
For Progress
It is when men love their families that
inspire them to work harder. For Garry
and Jessie, two of the top ten Galing
Mason 2015 finalists, the learnings
they earned throughout the training
and the contest itself is all for the benefit
of the family.
This is their story.
Garry Meca
Block 10 Lot 16, Phase 2, South Ville 6,
Brgy. Kay-anlog, Calamba City, Laguna
asked about his winning moment.
Garry is married to Catherine Sevilla
and has (4) four children.
Next to loving his family, Garry Meca
of Danao, Cebu City loves to work as a
mason. In honing his craft, Garry joined
Galing Mason, a free masonry training and
contest sponsored by the NHA, HOLCIM
Inc., Association of Construction and
Informal Workers (ACIW), Department of
Education (DepEd) and TESDA.
“Ang aking karanasan sa Galing
Mason contest ay nagdulot sa akin ng
mahahalagang alaala at aral. Pinalakas
nito ang aking loob na kaya kong
makipagsabayan sa iba, nagkaroon ako ng
mga kaibigan at lubos kong ikinagagalak
ang pagkakaroon ko ng National Certificate
II mula sa TESDA,” Garry shared to NHA.
Prior his Galing Mason contest stint,
Garry in 2013 took the Galing Mason
Training and earned his NC II TESDA
certification the same year. This certification
became his passport to join the search for
Galing Mason 2015 Championship held in
Javier, Leyte last September 2015.
Aniya, “Kung hindi man ako maging
champion, masaya na ako na maging
kabilang sa top ten.” His hardwork paid
off as his heart’s desire was granted. Garry
made it to the top ten and went home with
*Php 35,000.00.
“Hindi ko mahanap ang mga salita
na gusto kong sabihin sa pagkakataong
naibigay sa akin,” Garry described when
Note: Garry’s prize money was used as a
starting capital for their sari-sari store, and
for the education of his children. Lastly,
as an advance payment for their housing
amortization with NHA.
Signing of the MOU on CBSL between the NHA and the UN Habitat.
He congratulated the “groundbreaking
initiative” of NHA in recognizing the
“power of the communities to help
themselves recover from disaster and to
achieve better lives.”
The CBSL pilot implementation shall
cover the Municipalities of Carles,
Concepcion, and Estancia all in Iloilo
Province. The program aims to strengthen
the partnership among stakeholders,
particularly the active involvement of
the community associations, in all areas
of housing development and estate
“We believe in empowering the
community,” said Atty. Chito M. Cruz,
Chairman of the Housing and Urban
and Development Coordinating Council
(HUDCC). He would like to ensure the
effective and efficient implementation of
the CBSL, and if the program succeeded,
NHA will launch the same in other areas
Mr. Eusebio Jacinto, Jr., representative
of National Anti-Poverty Commission
(NAPC), added that the program can
hopefully be institutionalized since “a lot
of partners – international and local – are
willing to be part of a similar program
Furthermore, Ms. Margarita Songco,
Deputy Director General of the National
Economic and Development Authority
(NEDA), commended the advocacy on the
stakeholders’ participation.
The signing was witnessed by Atty.
Cruz, DDG Songco, Froilan R. Kampitan,
NHA Assistant General Manager, and Mr.
The CBSL Program is recently approved
by the NHA Board of Directors to augment
the existing housing program already in
place in the Visayas Region.
Jessie Ayabo
Block 16 Lot 118 Phase 3 Southville 6,
Brgy. Kay-anlog, Calamba City, Laguna
Jessie Ayabo’s practical but witty answer
during his Galing Mason Contest panel
interview led him to be one of the top ten
Panel: How do you know HOLCIM
Jessie: Ang HOLCIM Cement po ang
ginagamit from life to death.
Panel: How? (faces in wonder)
Jessie: Ibig sabihin mula sa paggawa ng
bahay para sa “buhay” at pati sa paggawa
ng mga nitso sa sementeryo para sa “patay”
ang ginagamit ay HOLCIM cement dahil
sa subok na matibay.
“Itong training ko sa Galing Mason ay
nakapagdagdag sa akin ng maraming skills
at ang aking National Certificate II (NC
II) na galing sa TESDA ang panghabang-
buhay na makakatulong sa aking
pagtatrabaho bilang mason,” said Jessie.
For someone who experienced a difficult
schooling when he was young, Jessie
prioritized the education of his children.
His eldest daughter now is a BS Education
graduate and his youngest is a first year BS
Social Work student.
“Noong nag-aaral pa ako, kami ng mga
kakalase ko ay nanunuluyan sa isang
barung-barong. Malayo kasi ang paaralan
sa aming mga tahanan noon. Sakripisyo
talaga,” dagdag niya.
Like Garry, Jessie received a total of Php
35, 000.00 and allotted the same for the
education of his children. He also updated
his NHA housing obligation.
A native of Cabugao, Apayao, Jessie
is married to Josephine, a widow with
five children. Together, they have two (2)
children, now adults 22 and 20.
Today, he is back in his masonry work,
“hindi ko inakala na ang pagiging mason
ang magdudulot ng ganitong ng pagkilala
“recognition” sa aking trabaho,” Jessie
exclaimed. - Felicitas Garcia Boa
*Php 20,000.00 and Php 10,000.00 for
being a graduate of NHA-HOLCIM Galing
Mason Training and additional P5,000.00
incentive was given to each 20 finalist.
Tacloban Beneficiaries
Get Housing Units
The National Housing Authority
(NHA), in cooperation with the City
Housing and Community Development
Office (CHCDO) of Tacloban, conducted a
raffle draw for the available housing units
at different permanent resettlement sites in
the city. Ms. Marilyn Lauzon, NHA Project
Manager for Leyte and Samar, CHCDO
Executive Director Maria Lourdes
Lagman, and Presidential Commission for
the Urban Poor (PCUP) Tacloban City Area
Coordinator Mr. Napoleon Cairo graced
the activity. The raffled units were from
Ridgeview Park I, Villa Diana, and Villa
Sofia located in the northern barangays of
Tacloban City.
In her speech, Ms. Lauzon said that
the assigning of housing units marks the
beginning of a new life for those families
who have been severely affected by
Supertyphoon Yolanda. She acknowledged
the efforts of the city government for its
continuous support to the resettlement
projects of the NHA. She added that only
those families with occupancy permits
will be awarded with the housing units.
She reminded everyone that once they are
in the permanent resettlement site, they
will be held responsible of their units in
maintaining the cleanliness, peace and
order within the resettlement site.
The NHA raffled a total of 391 units
for families living at the IPI Bunkhouse
in Barangay Caibaan and 253 for families
living at the NHA bunkhouse in Sagkahan.
They will be transferred to the Ridgeview
Park I in Cabalawan. At Villa Diana,
though all of the housing units are ready
for occupancy, only 112 housing units have
been issued occupancy permits and were
awarded to the families. The remaining
297 units are still subject for inspection by
the City Government. In Villa
Sofia, 100 housing units were
awarded from the families
originally from Barangay 88
near the airport area.
Ms. Marilyn Lauzon awards the
housing unit to a family living on IPI
New Year Around The Globe
Meet the weirdest and the grandest New Year parties in the World.
IN SCOTLAND, “Hogmanay” is the term for New
Year. One of their traditions during the celebration is
alighting barrels of tar to be rolled through the streets.
Another one is the ‘First Footing’, wherein the first to
step foot in their houses after midnight must be a tall,
dark-haired and handsome man to offer some gifts
like lumps of coal, black bun, and a whisky to toast.
IN SPAIN, a century-old tradition, ‘The 12 Lucky
Grapes’ has been embraced in celebration of New
Year. The Spaniards, in their red undies, gather
in front of television screens or in town squares,
carrying bowls with green grapes. TV screens feature
the 18th century ‘Real Casa de Correos’ in Madrid’s
Puerta del Sol with a pair of announcers in its
respective formals. As the clock strikes twelve, the
herald triggers the Spanish people to pop each of the
12 grapes at each of the 12 dongs – each symbolizes
the months of the coming year.
wear the best fashion and uncorking of champagne
is their main festive culture, and also to get luck.
New York Times Square offers fireworks display
for celebration and grand parties where Hollywood
artists and prominent people perform on stage for the
people. Meanwhile, some of them enjoy a relaxed
New Year’s Eve by watching Football Tournaments
via television. The said sports is telecast across the
country. It is a tradition continuing since 1916.
IN BRAZIL, New Year is welcomed by beach
parties that have been classified as one of the
best styles of party in the World. Aside from this,
Brazilians have traditional rituals. The feast of
Lemenja – African Goddess of the Sea coincides
with the party. The Copa Cabana beach in Rio de
Janeiro is lit up with candles while people, especially
the fishermen, gather in the bridge or boat to offer
things like perfume, food or things into the sea.
IN DENMARK, New Year is welcomed in a
unique way. Danes traditionally stand on a chair and
jump from it as the clock strikes twelve. They believe
that this will give them luck. Another Danish culture
is to gather all the dishes used in the passing year
and throw them at the front door – the more broken
plates, the more friends one shall have.
IN CHINA, New Year is also known as ‘Yuan Tan’.
Chinese celebrate the once-a-year event by feasting
and having Lion Dance for entertainment; beating of
drums and cymbals to drive away the evil; lighting
hundreds of lantern to welcome home the positive
vibes; and exchanging of red envelope containing
money (Lai See) is done as a symbol of good luck.
IN U.S.A., a very loud noise literally describes
American celebrations of New Year. Among these
are all-night parties which include people who
IN ANTARCTICA, New Year comes in during
summer. It has been at the Mc Murdo Station of
U.S.A. where dozens of solo artists and bands – all
Have a
Chili Con Gulay (left) and Really Raw Fruit Cake
And just like that, the Christmas season is here again.
We will be invited to endless parties and family gettogethers, and chances are, you’ll be eating like there’s
no tomorrow. Weight gain is almost inevitable, especially
when the buffet spread includes lechon, crispy pata, and an
array of rich and sinful desserts.
This is the time of the year when healthy eating gets
thrown out the window, and promises are made to go
on a diet after the New Year. But with a few creative
substitutions, you can indulge in delicious Christmas and
New Year fares without going overboard on calories and
fat. So if you haven’t figured out what to prepare on your
table on Christmas or New Year’s Eve, try these healthy
options from soup to bread, to veggie, courtesy of chefs
Jertie and Jacky Abergas of Jertie’s Kitchen.
Chili Con Gulay
Why it’s good for you: Aside from the healthy goodness
that vegetables has to offer, the added chili is said to reduce
pain from arthritis, reduce blood cholesterol, and lower the
rate of heart attack and stroke.
2 tbsp water or broth
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 large carrot, chopped
2 tbsp chilli powder
2 tbsp cumin
2 tbsp oregano
1 can tomato paste
28 oz whole tomatoes
3 cups water
1 cup mushrooms, chopped
1 cup kidney beans (canned or dried)
hot sauce
2 cups corns
If you’re using dried beans:
1. Soak beans for at least eight hours.
2. Once soaked, drain and rinse.
3. Cook in a pot with three cups of water and let it boil.
4. Set aside and let it cool.
If you’re using canned beans:
1. Drain canned beans and rinse.
2. Sauté onion, garlic, and carrot in water or broth.
3. Add chilli powder, cumin, and oregano.
4. Make sure vegetables are coated with spices.
5. Add tomato paste, tomatoes, water, mushroom, and
kidney beans and let it simmer.
6. Add corn.
7. Serve with sour cream and bread
Really Raw Fruitcake
Why it’s good for you: Raw fruits stuffed in a cake can
give you many benefits such as an increase in energy level
and better sleep. It can also make you look youthful, not to
mention, shed a few pounds.
1 cup dates
1 cup raisins
½ cup dried cranberries
1 cup raw almonds, soaked for 6 hours
1 cup raw walnuts, soaked for 6 hours
1 ½ cup desiccated coconut
1 ½ to tsp rum
1 cup prunes
¼ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp ground cloves
2 tsp cinnamon
water for soaking
juice of an orange (optional)
local, play for hours. This started in 1990. Celebration
in this place is indeed a reflection of a very peaceful
party. Perhaps it is the result of commercialism
absence – no one is trying to sell you anything.
“Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to
get it right,” said Oprah Winfrey, one of the richest
women in the World. - Joebert C. Chicano
New Year’s Reflection:
Making It Through
“I’ve learned that sometimes the darkest times can
bring us to the brightest places; that sometimes, the
most toxic people can teach us the most important
lessons. I’ve learned that our most painful struggles
can grant us the most growth; and that the most
heartbreaking losses of friendship and love can make
room for the most wonderful people.
“I’ve learned that what seems like a curse in the
moment can actually be a blessing, and that what
seems at the end of the road is actually just the
discovery that we are meant to travel down a different
path… that even when it’s scary, even when all of
our strength seems gone, we have to keep going,
and picking ourselves back up, and moving forward,
because whatever we’re battling in the moment will
pass, and we will make it through. We’ve made it this
far. We can make it through whatever comes next.”
- Daniell Koepke
Chickpea Sopas (Photos by Noel Pabalate)
1. Soak all dried fruits for 30 minutes
2. After soaking, drain water.
3. Separate fruits and nuts for décor later.
4. Add the rest of the fruits and nuts in a food processor
and process until everything are mixed well.
5. Use a cake or loaf pan to shape the fruit and nuts
Press the mix down to make sure it is compact.
6. Decorate the cake with the rest of the fruits and nuts.
Chickpea Sopas
Why it’s good for you: Chickpeas are high in dietary
fiber and protein. It also has low glycemic index that can
keep you feeling full for longer periods. It also lowers bad
cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of heart disease.
400g elbow macaroni (or any pasta noodle you prefer)
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 onion, chopped
¼ cup celery, thinly sliced
¼ cup carrots, julienned or in small cubes
½ cup cabbage, shredded or julienned
1 cup water or vegetable broth
2 to 3 cups coconut milk
1 can chickpeas, mashed
1 tsp black pepper
pinch of salt, to taste
1. Boil the pasta in a pot according to package
directions. Remove pasta once tender. Drain and rinse
and set aside.
2. Sauté garlic and onions in water or vegetable broth in
a pan over medium heat.
3. Add water or broth. Mix and simmer for three minutes
over medium heat.
4. Add carrots and celery. Stir. Let it simmer until it
5. Add coconut milk, cabbage, and mashed chickpeas.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste
7. Add pasta.
8. Bring to a boil.
9. Turn off heat and serve.
- Donna Mae B. Huarde
Source: www.gmanews.tv; www.mb.com; www.rappler.com
Team Mars Thru Nine States And
Washington, D.C. , U.S.A.
Team Mars from L to R... Lynette A. Josef, Loida G. Hilliard, Beng C. Perez, Coots T. Caluag, the author, Tishy A. Subido and Ludy A. Josef.
A grand vacation is in the bucket list of TEAM MARS, a
group of friends bonded by the love of sports, comprised of
current and former members of the NHA Volleyball Team.
We were also instrumental in introducing badminton as a
competitive sport in NHA. Members are: Loida Galindo
(Acctg.,CIED), Coots Caluag (Acctg., EMD), Lynnette
Josef (Acctg.), Josie Palad (CIED), Babes Castro (CIED),
Neri Subido (CIED) and Ludy Josef (NCL).
Loida Galindo and Coots Caluag left NHA early on.
Coots has immigrated to New Jersey, USA since 2007.
She has been urging us to give her a visit, since life, as
we know in the USA, is all work, and she misses terribly
the bonding of the group. Loida just recently married an
American retiree, and has settled in Connecticut.
Meeting up in New Jersey became a possibility when,
last December 2014, my youngest daughter Tishy, a
freshman at the UST Conservatory of Music, Major in
Piano, intimated to my hubby and I that she would rather
travel to the East Coast and visit The Juilliard School in
New York City in lieu of celebrating her 18th birthday with
a debut party.
Considering the cost benefit analysis of that option, we
easily gave in to her request. After coordinating with Coots
and Loida, I purchased tickets via Cathay Pacific to New
Jersey for Tishy and I. Our trip to USA was scheduled from
June 6 to July 4, 2015.
The Josef sisters, Lynnette and Ludy, have been travelling
around Asia, and a trip to the US is their biggest dream!
Getting a US Visa, however, is the biggest hindrance.
With the help of Pops, my hubby, the sisters were so
fortunate to be given 10 years multiple entry visas on their
first try. Immediately, I helped them book a flight, and we
were able to get the same travel dates.
Planning for the trip was difficult since we all had to
synchronize our schedules. Primary on our objective
is to all go together to NYC in accompanying Tishy at
The Juilliard School. I googled The Juilliard School for
information on group visits, and I was disheartened to
I always feel happy, you know why?
Because I don’t expect anything
from anyone, expectations always
hurt. Life is short, so love your life,
be happy and keep smiling. Just live
for yourself and before you speak,
listen; before you write, think;
before you spend, earn; before you
pray, forgive; before you hurt, feel;
before you hate, love; before you
quit, try; before you die, live!
- William Shakespeare
discover that they have stringent requirements. Based
on their website, we wouldn’t have qualified for a group
visit. I was not about to lose hope and I sent an email and
explained the purpose of our visit.
I got a formal reply from the Juilliard School informing
me that the school has decided to waive all requirements.
That was a moment of jubilation and gratitude! Team Mars
was all agog preparing for our meet up in NJ!
Finally, on June 8, all of us settled at Coot’s house in
Belleville, NJ. Babes flew in from LA, and Loida drove
all the way to NJ from Connecticut with new hubby, Jerry.
The first day was bonding time: a lot of stories told and
retold. Coots was the happiest, since we all volunteered
to do house chores for her and her older brother whom we
all call Diko.
On the second day, clad in our Team Mars black and gold
shirts, we took the 30-minute bus ride to New York. Armed
with a map, we bravely embarked on an unguided tour
of NYC’s scenic routes. We had photo ops at Broadway
Street, Times Square, Fifth Avenue, and a peek of Central
Park. People were curiously looking at our identical Team
Mars shirts and one even yelled “Sweetheart, I am from
After more than an hour of walking, we reached our
destination at the Lincoln Center, location of The Juilliard
School. We were welcomed by our guide, Amanda, a
Juilliard sophomore, and she toured us around the campus
and various recital and concert venues. Tishy was privileged
to have played Sonata on a Steinway & Sons grand piano.
As a mother, it’s sad that I wasn’t able to commemorate
that in a photovideo, as it was strictly prohibited.
On June 11, we celebrated two milestones: the 18th
birthday of Tishy, and the golden anniversary of Ludy!
We had fun grilling steaks on the new outdoor griller that
Coots purposely bought for our visit!
Our next trip was in Atlantic City. We stayed at Trump
Taj Mahal. The first outlet we went to was the Tanger
During the second week, we went back to NYC twice
for the customary tour of the iconic places. We went up on
the 86th floor of the Empire State Building, and had a 360
degree view of Midtown, Lower Manhattan and Central
Park .Tishy dropped a coin in the old fashioned binocular
at the promenade deck, so we could take turns to have a
close up look of The Hudson River and East River, The
Brooklyn Bridge, Times Square, The Statue of Liberty, and
much more.
Our favorite iconic statue is the Statue of Liberty, also
a symbol of hope and determination for many people.
We took a Ferry trip to the island from Battery Park. We
also visited the Ellis Island Immigration Museum which
documents the history of the many people coming to seek
a better life in the United States over the last few centuries.
We also visited the National September Memorial or
Ground Zero, a sobering tribute to the thousands who lost
their lives on that fateful day.
The Rockefeller Center is situated in Midtown
Manhattan and it offers a variety of attractions open to the
public all year round. We saw the famous NBC studios
and discovered what it takes to make shows such as “NBC
Nightly News” and “Saturday Night Live”. Tishy and I
found a hole-in-a-wall pizza joint, which Tishy said serves
the best pizza ever, beating her earlier favorite hole-in-thewall pizza parlor at San Francisco, California.
Our last stop is the Central Park which is so extensive
and spans a staggering 341 hectares, which offers a
welcome break from the lights and buzz of the Manhattan
concrete jungle.
Next on our itinerary was Vienna, Virginia.
From Vienna, we took the train and toured Washington,
DC, the U.S. capital. It is a compact city on the Potomac
River, bordering the states of Maryland and Virginia.
We were in awe with the sight of imposing neoclassical
monuments and buildings – including the iconic ones that
house the federal government’s 3 branches: the Capitol,
White House and Supreme Court.
On the second day, we took the Big Bus. Our hop-on,
hop-off ticket also provided us the freedom to get off the
bus to explore and visit Washington DC tourist attractions.
Our favorite among the sites is the Lincoln Memorial.
On our third week in the East Coast, we went to
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to visit Coot’s nephew. Philly
is noted for the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. We
got to sample the famous Philly Steak with cheese at Pat’s,
a must go eclectic neighborhood.
In between stays at New Jersey, we went to Sunday
masses at Sacred Heart at Bellevue and after, we went to
malls like Macy’s, Neiman Marcus and outlets for shopping
and dining. We would laugh at ourselves for we were done
with shopping after the malls’ closing time. Palagi kaming
napagsasarhan ng malls!!!
Next stop was the visit to Loida and Jerry in their new
apartment at Vernon, Connecticut (CT). CT is one of the
first of New England states we went to. We toured around
the state starting with Elizabeth Park, Mark Twain’s and
Harriet Elizabeth Beecher Stowe’s Houses. Twain and
Stowe are renowned authors. We also heard mass at the
Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes in Litchfield.
They also brought us to Massachusetts (2nd New England
State) where we got to see Plymouth Rock, the site of
the first colony in New England. We visited campuses of
famous universities like Harvard, Boston and MIT. Last
stop at Mass was the Divine Mercy Shrine. We had a sort
of miraculous experience in the shrine. A separate article
has to be written to share that wonderful event.
The 3rd New England State we visited is Rhode Island
(RI). We went to the famous Newport Mansions and Cliff
Walk with a panoramic view of the Atlantic Ocean. Our
favorite mansion is called the Breakers, owned by the
wealthy Vanderbilt family. Vanderbilt Mansion is the
grandest and most opulent of the Mansions. It is a must to
have a panoramic groupie shot!
Alas, the day had come that we had to leave the good
ole USA. We could not believe we ended up visiting nine
states, plus Washington, D.C. in one month! New York
City; New Jersey; Pennsylvania; Delaware and Maryland
(passing through); Virginia; and three (3) New England
States in four days: Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode
We were so blessed to have generous and accommodating
friends. Maxed credit cards and loans to be paid
notwithstanding, travelling with family and friends creates
wonderful and unforgettable memories.
increases our knowledge and widens our perspective. Our
one month vacation helped us recharge our “batteries”
by disconnecting us from the daily grind. A feeling of
nostalgia never fails to overcome me every time I look
back at hundreds of photographs and reliving stories and
Looking forward to the next Team Mars adventure!!!!
- Nerissa A. Subido, CIED
Twenty-one females and 17 males. A mix
of homeowners’ association presidents and
members, youth and high school students,
barangay workers, local government
employees, young professionals and
senior citizens. Having an inate interest in
writing, they responded to the Community
Relations and Information Operations
Department’s (CRIOD) invitation for
project beneficiaries to join a Basic Writing
and Photography Training-Workshop
to create a regular pool of contributors
for LinkOD, NHA’s online community
newspaper. Having completed the basic
training activity, they have formed the first
batch of regular LinKOD contributors from
Luzon and are now NHA’s partners in its
Community Information Program geared
towards generating the community’s
support, participation and involvement in
housing development.
LinkOD was launched in May 2011
as a fast and immediate access to news
and information among NHA project
technology. It is a major informationmotivation tool to carry-out and sustain
the NHA-community partnership. Posted
in NHA’s official website www.nha.gov.
ph, LinkOD issues have been put together
using the community news and stories,
poems, literacy pieces, graphics and
artwork shared by NHA beneficiaries in
English or Filipino.
The Basic Writing and Photography
Training-Workshop was conducted to
attract more contributors for LinkOD.
The one-day session was facilitated
by the CRIOD-Program Planning and
Review Division (PPRD) communications
development team in four (4) pilot areas
-- South Sector I and Dagat-Dagatan for
the National Capitol Region, Bagong
Nayon II for Southern Luzon and Bicol
and Towerville Project for Northern and
Central Luzon. As backgrounder on
LinkOD, the team presented the history
From Beneficiary
to LinkOD Contributor
NHA’s homeowner’s association presidents and members turned LinkOD writers and artists during the
writing and photography workshop. (Photos courtesy of CRIOD)
and development of NHA’s Community
Information Program, the different
medium of communications that have
been used over the years and the seven (7)
sections which can be contributed to: Over
the Top (Banner Story); In Focus (Editor’s
Pick: Feature on beneficiaries/community
programs, activities); News Express (with
link to Freeze Frame Photo Gallery);
What’s in the Air (Environmental, Health
and Wellness Concerns); Gender Station
(Feature on GAD-related programs and
Pinoy Slang 2015
Most of us have been avid facebook users since its creation in 2004. Today, facebook
serves as the number one online social networking site worldwide, translated into numerous languages for the use of other countries. Amassing a total of 1.8 billion active
users per month as of August 2015, facebook has totally changed the way of life of our
generation – from the way we share our thoughts, we communicate with our loved ones
and friends, and even the way we talk. And speaking of the new way we talk, many of
us Filipino facebook users surely has come upon words like “bae”, “pabebe”, “ninja
moves”, and other terms which were always popping out of our timelines, but we absolutely have no idea about. So before the year ends, let me share with you some of these
words that made it into the Pinoy slang of 2015. Who knows, you might be able to use
these someday?
Graphics by Gavin P. Corpuz
1. BAE – According to an urban
dictionary, this word was originally
an acronym for the phrase “Before
Anything Else”. But recently, the term
became a shortened version of endearing
words “babe” or “baby”. The word
became even more famous in the country
when Kapuso actor Alden Richards was
labeled “Ang Pambansang Bae”.
USE IN A SENTENCE: I love food
more than men. So fried chicken is
literally my bae.
2. PABEBE – The word “pabebe”
literally means “magpa-baby”, to act like
a small child or to act in a cute manner.
Today, the word is used to describe
someone who is acting pa-hard to get,
choosy, or pa-cute.
USE IN A SENTENCE: Pabebe yung aso
ko, ayaw ng dog food.
3. BEAST MODE – This term possibly
developed from the video game Altered
Beast Sega where the character transforms
into different types of beasts when mad.
Thus, the word “beast mode” literally
means the person is really mad, he’s
already transforming into a beast.
USE IN A SENTENCE: Ang lakas makabeast mode ng traffic sa EDSA!
4. NINJA MOVES – Referring to the fast
but silent movements of Ninja warriors,
the term “ninja moves” literally refers to
a person’s speedy actions without being
USE IN A SENTENCE: Nawala yung
chocolate ko sa ref! Ninja moves yung
activities: Gender Sensitivity Trainings
Program (EPP), women empowerment);
Creative Juices (Literary/Art Work,
Entertainment); and Crossing Borders
(Collection Enhancement: Testimonial
feature on fully-paid beneficiaries, updated
payors). The writing module contained the
guidelines on using the four (4) Ws (Who,
What, Where, When) and one (1) H (How),
while the photography module contained
tricks and tips on basic photography using
“galawang breezy” may have developed
from the English word “breezy” which
means the gust of wind. Today, this term
refers to the way men try to do their ninja
moves to score a date with a girl.
breezy si Frankie kay Meng a? Isang linggo
palang sila magkakilala, may date na agad?
6. FOREVER – This word literally
means never ending or eternally. Today,
“forever” usually refers to a person’s status
of love life.
Anniversary ng parents ko! Totoo talaga
ang forever!”
7. EME-EME – The slang, “emeeme” is believed to be from the gay lingo
from the ‘80s, “any-any” which means
“anything”. In the ‘90s, this term morphed
into the word “anik-anik” or “kung anoano lang”. Today, from “any-any”, the
word developed into the slang, “eme-eme”.
USE IN A SENTENCE: Ano ba yang
script na ‘yan! Eme-eme lang ang flow!
According to National Artist for
Literature, Virgilio Almario, these words
are part of colloquialism. It is a way of
showing a distinct group in the society.
People make their own lingo or their own
way of communicating, especially for
the sector who feels that they are being
marginalized. In a way, slang or lingos are
formed so that people inside these groups
or communities can relate with each other.
But whatever these lingos may be, the
creation of these words is a proof that
our language is alive, dynamic, and is
continuing to change over the years.
Formal or informal, what’s important is
that, we are able to use our native language
to communicate and to reach out to our
fellow Filipinos here and abroad.
- Donna Mae B. Huarde
smart phones and digital cameras.
The participants let their creative juices
flow, coming-up with impressive outputs
for both modules, including drawings
and graphics, enough to have a ready
supply of features/contributions for future
LinkOD issues. And in recognition of their
application of the writing and photography
guidelines they had learned, a Best Writer
and a Best Photographer was chosen from
each of the training-workshop conducted.
Highlighting each training-workshop
was the culminating activity where
each participant wrote their individual
commitment as LinkOD contributor on the
LinkOD stationary and sealing this with
their fingerprints.
“I commit to submitting pictures and
articles once a year for LinkOD.”
“Ipinapangako ko na magbibigay ng
aking kaalaman sa pagpapahayag sa aking
komunidad at i-share ang aking talent sa
pagsusulat at pagkuha ng litrato upang
maibahagi sa iba ang mga nagyayari sa
pamayanan at makag-inspire ang aking
kuwento.” -NCR South Sector I
“I, Lucy Rous D. Hilarion, am promising
that I will make updates regarding my
community every time there is an event
… that might be of help to others. It may
take a lot of effort but I am eager to make
a Voice in my town … Thank you for the
“ Ako, si Alma T. Basa-Blanco, lehitimong
residente at opisyal ng Brgy. NBBS,
Lungsod ng Navotas, ay nangangakong
ibibigay ang buong kooperasyon sa abot
ng aking makakaya para sa ikatataguyod
ng LinkOD ng NHA. Ako ay nakahandang
ipahayag ang mga magagandang
kaganapan sa aming komunidad upang
maging inspirasyon o huwaran sa ibang
lugar o organisasyon.” -Dagat-Dagatan
“Ipinapangako ko na ilalahad ko
ang nangyayari sa aming lugar at ang
pangyayari ang isusulat ko upang maikalat
ang magandang balita. Maglalaan rin
ako ng oras para sa pagkuha ng picture
ng mga magagandang bagay. Ako po ay
nagpapasalamat para sa aking natutunan
at ibabahagi ko rin ito sa aking mga
“Bilang isa sa magiging contributor
ng LinkOD, ako ay nagngangakong
magiging responsable sa mga tungkulin
na naka-assign sa akin. Ako ay magiging
tapat sa bawa’t article na aking isusulat.
Aking gagawin ang lahat ng aking
makakaya para sa ikagaganda ng LinkOD.
At sisikapin kong makapagbigay ng
artikulong makapagbibigay-impormasyon
sa mga mambabasa.”-Bagong Nayon II
“I will be eco-friendly in terms of
cleanliness; take a deep value in human
interest. As a stakeholder, I will take care
of my surroundings and anything with life
and to be an eye-opener for awareness and
“Isang pribileheyo ang mapasama
sa LinkOD na naglalayong imulat ang
mata ng lipunan sa mga pangyayari sa
kasalukuyan. Kung kaya’t bilang kabatang
nabigyan ng ganitong pambihirang
oportunidad, ipinapangako kong magiging
responsable ako sa aking tungkulin.
Magiging maagap sa aking mga gawain
at maglalaan ako ng sapat ng oras sa
LinkOD. Buong puso kong gagawin
nang sa gayo’y maging kabahagi ako ng
LinkOD sa paglikha na pagbabago. Umasa po
kayong maasahan ninyo ako.” -Towerville
These are but some of the commitments
made. These LinkOD contributors have
taken-on a nobler role, from being mere
beneficiaries of housing to partnering with the
NHA in transforming lives and communities.
As the NHA’s greatest resource, may they
inspire others to also contribute to making
their communities shine through their news
and feature stories, drawings and photos that
capture gender-sensitive and defining moments
of empowerment and changed lives.
-Bing N. Doctor, CRIOD
Apatnapung Taon Na Po Kami
ni Jerome F. Banay, CRO A, Bagong Nayon II Project
Apat na dekada.
Libu-libong kawani.
Mahahalagang adhikain.
Isang National Housing Authority.
Sa puntong ito’y ating balikan.
Tulad na lang ni *Maria na isang simpleng empleyado ng NHA simula pa noong 1975.
Ngayo’y may asawa, mga anak at mga apo na sa edad na 63. Samakatuwid, isa nang
certified lola o senior citizen sa paglipas ng mahabang panahon. Simula’t sapul, sa ahensya
na siya namasukan at nagtrabaho. Dito niya iginugol ang kaniyang oras, dedikasyon at
Isang panibagong araw na naman para kay Maria at hindi nya akalain na ito na ang
ika-apatnapung taon niya sa naturang ahensya. “Hay, 40th anniversary ko na sa NHA”,
nasambit niya habang naghahanda para sa napakahalagang araw na ito para sa kaniya at
sa institusyong humubog sa kaniyang angking-kakayahan, galing, talino, at maging sa
kaniyang pagkatao.
Natigilan si Maria habang siya’y papalapit na sa main entrance ng NHA. At doo’y
nagbalik-tanaw sa apat na dekadang paglilingkod sa ahensya. Bumalik lahat ng masasaya,
maging ang mga malulungkot na alaala na parang kahapon lamang nangyari ang lahat
ng iyon.
Tandang-tanda pa niya ang kaniyang mga naging karanasan noong siya’y nagsisimula pa
lamang sa Tondo Foreshore Development Project, taong 1975. Si Maj. Gen. Gaudencio
V. Tobias ang Pangkalahatang-Tagapamahala sa noo’y kakapasinaya pa lamang na NHA.
Sa ilalim ng pamamahala ni GM Tobias, kakaiba ang kanilang naging kasanayan dahil
sa disiplinado at epektibong pangangasiwa nito, na siya namang lalong nagtulak sa
kanila na ibigay ang de-kalidad na serbisyong-publiko. Sa katunayan, inaabot pa sila
ng madaling-araw upang matapos lamang ang mga trabahong iniatas sa kanila. Dugo at
pawis ang kanilang ipinuhunan, ngunit hindi nila inalintana ang hirap at sakripisyo para
maitaguyod at makamit ang tinatamasang tagumpay ngayon ng NHA. Nararapat lamang
na sila’y tawagin na mga bayani sa makabagong panahon bilang pagkilala sa kanilang
mga natatanging kontribusyon sa bayang sinilangan.
Bahagyang pumatak ang mga luha ni Maria habang papalapit na kung saan gaganapin
ang “Gawad-Parangal para sa mga Natatanging Empleyado ng NHA”. Ito’y luha ng
kagalakan -- kagalakang dulot ng ilang taong serbisyo at ilang buhay na napagkalooban
ng gawad-pabahay ng isang makataong pamahalaan.
Sa apatnapung taong pamamayagpag ng Pambansang Tagapangasiwa sa Pabahay, ilang
mga General Managers na rin ang dumaan. Iba’t-ibang karanasan at kasanayan na rin ang
pinagdaan ni Maria, na siyang lalong humubog sa kaniyang pagkatao. Naging bahagi siya
ng kaliwa’t kanang demolisyon sa Metro Manila upang bigyang-daan ang mga proyektong
pangkaunlaran ng pamahalaan. Nasaksihan niya ang mga hinaing ng mga apektadong
pamilya sapagkat mariin nilang tinutulan ang paglikas sa kanila sa resettlement site.
Viema Picazo Bags
Outstanding Alumna Award
Ms. Viema Picazo, Acting Industrial
Relations Development Chief from the
Human Resource Management Department
(HRMD), was hailed one of this year’s
The Outstanding Pilgrimians (TOP) for
Government Service by her Alma Mater,
Pilgrim Christian College in Cagayan de
Oro City.
Founded in 1948, the Pilgrim Christian
College (PCC) celebrated its 67th Founding
Anniversary from November 25 to 29, 2015.
One of the highlights of their celebration
was the Search for the Ten Outstanding
Pilgrimians (TOP) 2015, where Ms. Picazo
who graduated from high school Batch
1974 was honored the TOP 2015 Award for
the Government Service Category. Among
the awardees were alumni from different
batches who were given recognition for
their excellence in Corporate Management,
Research and Linkages, Medicine,
Entrepreneurship, Journalism, Education,
and other fields. The criteria for the award
included noteworthiness of performance/
contribution, impact of achievement and
Isang hindi makakalimutang eksena na hango sa totoong pangyayari ang biglang sumagi
sa isip ni Maria na noo’y isang Estate Management Assistant. Ito ay ang naganap na
demolisyon sa North Rail kung saan mahigit isang libong pamilya ang naging apektado.
Napakalakas ng pagtutol ng mga tao. Ngunit kinakailangan silang ilikas alinsunod sa mga
batas na sumasaklaw dito para sa mas disenteng tirahan at mas maayos na pamayanan
para sa kanilang mga pamilya.
extent to which the work has benefited the
community, firm Christian convictions,
and personal values anchored on the
ideals of Christian virtues.
Ms.Picazo flew all the way to her
hometown in Cagayan de Oro City on
November 25, 2015 to personally receive
her award on November 27 at the PCC
Auditorium-Maisie Van Vactor Hall. Prior
to this, she also attended a Thanksgiving
Service on November 26, 2015.
According to Ms. Picazo, the said
award means a lot to her, especially at this
time when government service is faced
with a lot of challenges. She believes that
an outstanding award for government
service in these trying times is invaluably
rewarding and truly inspiring. She also
hopes that this will serve as an inspiration
to the younger generation to continue
pursuing to make a difference and impact
in their respective areas of service.
Ms. Picazo has been with NHA for 32
Hunting For
Santa Claus
Nakakatakot, nakakalungkot, at nakakapanghina ng loob ang ganitong mga kaganapan.
Ngunit kailangang mangibabaw ang tatag ng loob upang bigyang-daan ang mas
magandang buhay para sa mga informal settlers.
Noong 1990s, nagkaroon ng malawakan at napapanahong pagbabago sa ahensya dulot
ng modernisasyon at paglaganap ng makabagong teknolohiya. Dahil dito, napabilis at
higit na naging epektibo ang pag-abot ng serbisyo sa mga benepisyaryo ng pabahay.
Isa itong matinding pagsubok para kay Maria sapagkat kailangan niyang sumailalim sa
panibagong pagsasanay upang makasabay sa modernisasyon. Subalit hindi ito naging
hadlang upang lalo pa niyang pagbutihin ang kaniyang kakayahan.
Sa paglipas ng mga taon, nagsulputan ang iba’t-iba pang mga resettlement projects,
maging sa kanayunan upang mabilis na matugunan ang lumalaking pangangailangan sa
murang pabahay. Kasabay nito ang pagkakaroon ng makatao at mas maayos na sistema
na nakapaloob sa mga alituntunin ng NHA na siyang mahigpit na ipinapatupad sa lahat
ng mga saklaw nito.
Sa kasalukuyan, ang mga uliran at huwarang mga kawani ng ahensya ay nagkakaisa sa
pagsasakatuparan sa isang hangarin sa taong 2019 – na ang NHA ay nakapag-abot na ng
50% na gawad-pabahay sa mga mahihirap nating kababayan, batay sa 2011 na senso na
nakatira sa mga alulusan, delikadong lugar, at apektado ng proyekto ng pamahalaan sa
buong kapuluan.
Napangiti si Maria habang nakaupo at hinihintay ang pagsisimula ng pagdiriwang ng
Gawad Parangal. Makalipas ang isang sandali, nagsimula na ang programa at di kalaunan
ay unti-unti nang pinarangalan ang ilang mga kawani.
“At sa pagkakataong ito, ang Gawad-Parangal para sa Ulirang Empleyado ng Taon, isang
bayani sa makabagong henerasyon ay walang iba kundi si…Maria Elena Fernandez…
salubungin natin siya ng isang masigabong palakpakan.” Nagsitayo ang lahat bilang
pagkilala sa di matatawarang serbisyo na ipinamalas ni Maria.
* Si Maria ay kumakatawan sa libu-libong kawani ng NHA na walang kapagurang iginugol ang mahahalagang oras at
dedikasyon nila para sa NHA.
Challenge yourself. Search for the
twelve Santas.