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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Spent bullets in CSAFP Cup 2013 to give hope to ‘Pablo’ victims

In yet another effort to rebuild the lives of victims of calamity in the Philippines, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) slated the next Chief of Staff AFP Cup (CSAFP Cup) for 2013 to become a fund-raising event for children who were orphaned or left without resources to continue their studies due to the devastation brought about by typhoon ‘Pablo’.

The CSAFP Cup 2013, a shootfest where high ranking officials and members of the AFP and shooting enthusiasts from the civilian sector are expected to compete this coming August 9-11 at the Armscor Shooting Ranges in Marikina City, will benefit additional scholars picked from families in Compostela Valley in Mindanao who were devastated by the typhoon in December 2012.

General Emmanuel T. Bautista, Chief-of-Staff of AFP, conceptualized the event to give further meaning to the annual gathering of the best shooters under the uniformed service from all over the Philippines.

More Help Needed

In an article written by Tara Quismundo of Philippine Daily Inquirer dated June 21, 2013, United Nations’ Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (Unocha) said in a statement that the ‘Pablo’ victims in Mindanao are still in need of dire help even almost after a year.

Unocha head David Carden said that the typhoon victims still need assistance in different aspects of living, particularly in fulfilling basic needs.

“The requirements are still there in the areas of shelter, education, sociopsychological rehabilitation. A lot of people who lost relatives, friends, they are recovering now and I’d say we don’t have much time… We have to move rather quickly,” said Rashid Khalikov, the Geneva-based Unocha director was also quoted in the article.

Among the results of the loss of family members is that young children had to stop their education in order to help the family rise from their impoverished condition by pitching in with house work or accepting jobs at their early ages to support their needs.

New Hope

Knowing full well the importance of education in the development of future citizens, the CSAFP Cup 2013 is expected to gather enough funds to further sustain the old and new scholars of the AFP among the ‘Pablo’ victims.

The Philippine Military Academy (Dimalupig) Class of 1981 to which Gen Bautista belongs, had already granted scholarships for the 15 students who fell victim to Pablo. The awarding ceremony was held at the Army's 10th Infantry Division headquarters in Mawab town, Compostela Valley in February 2013. 

 The fund-raising activity  is supposed to generate enough funds to sustain the project for the next few years until the beneficiaries finish college.

The strengthened partnership of AFP with Arms Corporation of the Philippines, the leading manufacturer of firearms in the country, through the memorandum of agreement signed last May 2013 ensures that this year’s CSAFP Cup would have more participants. 

This is because the MOA now gives all active and retired members of AFP a 15 percent discount with every Armscor firearm they buy from the 33 commissary stores in the Philippines.

Armscor firearms are usually with discounts only during gun shows, yet Armscor has decided to make the partnership with AFP in order to make their products more accessible to its market.

AFP Chief General Emmanuel T Bautista poses for a souvenir photo with ARMSCOR Executive Ms Gina Marie Angangco after the MOA signing held at Camp Aguinaldo in Quezon City. (ARMSCOR Photo)

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