North Mindanao folk told: Taal 1,000 km away, help instead of panic-buying for masks


CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY—An official of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) in northern Mindanao has asked residents in the region to stop worrying about ash fall as a result of the eruption of Taal Volcano which is more than 1,000 kilometers away.

Instead, the region’s people must think of how to help in providing relief to those now suffering from the eruption’s effects.


“Those affected are the ones suffering, while we are not. They need our help,” said Marcial Labininay, Phivolcs regional officer in charge, in an interview on Wed (Jan. 15).

Labininay’s appeal came amid a rush by city residents to hoard N95 facial masks for fear of ash fall reaching Mindanao.


On Tuesday (Jan. 14), store shelves were emptied of the masks as many residents, who had relatives in Metro Manila, scampered to buy these to send to their loved ones.

The masks are in short supply in Metro Manila.

But Labininay said Mindanao residents are not at all at risk from the eruption and were in a position to help instead of joining the panic-buying of masks.

“We should extend our help, even if we have no relatives living there,” said the Phivolcs regional head.

“Donating an essential commodity like drinking water is already a big deal for them as most of the displaced peoples’ water sources have already been contaminated,” Labininay said.

On Tuesday, the nongovernment organization Balay Mindanaw Foundation Inc. donated 3,000 masks while Xavier University’s Biophilic Society has launched a donation campaign for N95 masks, canned goods, beddings and blankets, toiletries, clothes, medicines, leash and collars for animals, and dog and cat food, as well as monetary donations.

The Society said donations may be given at Room 206, 2nd floor of the Science Center in Xavier University here.

Edited by TSB

Inquirer calls for support for the victims of Taal volcano eruption

Responding to appeals for help, the Inquirer is extending its relief to the families affected by the recent eruption of Taal volcano.

Cash donations may be deposited in the Inquirer Foundation Corp. Banco De Oro (BDO) Current Account No: 007960018860.

Inquiries may be addressed and emailed to Inquirer’s Corporate Affairs office through [email protected]

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