Eight months into this pandemic but we are still in the fight. Fortunately there are some bright spots worth capitalizing on. While our experts and the medical community make headway into the pillars of prevention and management, a group of concerned citizens formed the KilKoVid (Kilusang Kontra COVID) initiative as a resounding call for civil society to step up and team up with our authorities, for the common good.
KilKoVid was the brainchild of a committed group of civil society crusaders who wanted to actualize the challenge of helping the government beat the COVID crisis. In the early stage, the originators identified Quezon City not only as its center for operations but also as the pioneering city which would benefit most from a multi-sectoral approach on COVID management, hinged on popular support. This was formalized through a MOA (memorandum of agreement) with the QC government last September 17. It seemed like the foundation was definitely being clearly laid and activities pushed forward.
Hence, on October 22, 2020, a cross-sectional virtual convention was held at the Manuel Quezon Memorial Hall of Quezon City, to breathe life and soul to KilKovid and officially begin this long process of partnering with the different stakeholders in combating this pandemic.
The convention was anchored by the ever-indefatigable lawyer, radio-TV host and writer and currently serving as President of the Celebrity Club – Atty Dot RamosBalasbas-Gancayco.
The initial salvo went to another inspiring woman in these trying times, QC Mayor Joy Belmonte, who talked candidly about the effects of COVID in her jurisdiction and the steps she and her team took to bring order and compassion where this is needed most. She brought along QC Epidemiologist Dr. Rolando Cruz to provide the lowdown on how the city will balance health and economic strategies to further maintain its downward trend of COVID cases.
For perspective, next in the line of impressive speakers was the slot of the DILG (Department of Local Government) who was tapped to discourse on current updates of the IATF and NTF on the nation’s COVID situation. DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año sent his emissary, Usec. Bernardo Florece, Jr., who gave such a comprehensive government perspective.
From government side to a health reform advocate, Dr Tony Leachon shared his reflections on the past month’s gains and pains, particularly when he was directly involved in the process by virtue of his former membership into the National Task Force COVID-19 (NTF). Doc Tony is currently keenly watching the European “surge” and has actively taken on the role of people’s online eagle-eye, with his growing popularity in social media communities.
The other health expert and Infectious Disease specialist, Dr. Edsel Salvana, had to “laymanize” his COVID 101 basics as he explained how the virus caught the world flatfooted in early 2020. On hindsight he also proudly discussed how their Cebu team managed to contain a small bubble upsurge within weeks of its ECQ.
The virtual event also heard from the House Economist, Representative Stella Luz Quimbo, who maintained that health and business recovery must be a simultaneous philosophy, to be able to move forward, until a vaccine is available. Presenting all those ideas and programs, even at the barangay level, spelled hope and determination to overcome against the odds.
The last presentation detailed the role of Information Communication and Technology in our COVID response, which was thoroughly rendered by Department of Information and Technology – DICT (former) USec . Eliseo M. Rio Jr. Of course the exciting part for many was the unveiling of plans for an upgraded, globally-efficient, internet service in the short-term.
Also voicing out their support for a united KilKoVid Community were the various Barangays and Alliance Partners:
- Liga ng mga Barangay sa Pilipinas-Quezon City Chapter (Pres. Alfredo Roxas)
- Rotary International District 3780 (Gov. Johnny Yu)
- UP Women Lawyer’s Circle Inc. (Pres. Arlene Ureta)
- Philippine Academy of Family Physicians-National (Pres. Dr. Marivic Cruz)
- Philippine Academy of Family Physicians – Quezon City Chapter (Pres. Dr. Flora Marin)
- Philippine College of Physicians-Quezon City Chapter (Pres. Dr. Melvin Hacutina)
- Urban Green Communes (Pres. Juan Carlo Tejano)
- Celebrity Sports Club Inc. (GM Arturo Tibay)
Musical breathers were provided by KilKoVid advocates Dr. Nonoy Zuniga and singer-composer Noel Cabangon. In the same vein, Bgy Kap. Camille David led the opening prayer and the National Anthem was played from the video, LUPANG HINIRANG 2020: A tribute to Filipino’s will and conviction (Alpha Media Production Services).
It felt like a fresh start, but the work ahead will be tedious and will be a call for genuine commitment. Hence, KilkoVid thanked its volunteers and supporters, as well as the public at large, for partaking in this big-bang convention, to kick-start the many projects and activities lined up for a better and healthier Philippines.
Kilusang Kontra COVID is a people’s initiative to help in the COVID response. While it fully supports government strategies and mandates, KilKoVid will lend its ears and share its voice, in strongly recommending sound decisions and options in this time of crisis.
In its young stage of development, KilkoVid is managed and operated by civic leaders, under lean resources. Volunteers are encouraged to get productive here. Donations for PPEs and other health requirements of frontliners will be highly appreciated, certainly just the start of work ahead.
For more information, please visit the FB Page: https://www.facebook.com/kilkovidph/.
You may also contact 0917 325 5288 or send an email to [email protected].