BORONGAN CITY – With a cool breeze wafting from the sea, about 500 folks of various ages joined the first ever Fun Run organized by the Philippine Red Cross Eastern Samar chapter for the benefit of its blood bank and other projects.
Under overcast skies but no rain, the runners – and walkers – negotiated the 5-kilometer -or- so distance, ending at the plaza, where a short program was held.
“It’s immensely gratifying that Borongan, despite its perceived chronic indifference to noble pursuits, can come together after all,” said Jesse C. Solidon, the chapter’s director. “In behalf of our chapter, thanks everyone!”
Solidon said he expects a bigger turn-out next year as more people become aware of the Red Cross in Eastern Samar and as its programs benefit more people.
The Philippine Red Cross Eastern Samar chapter is one of the few in the Philippines that operates a blood bank, thanks to the support of friends and benefactors from the United States and elsewhere.
A Borongan native, Dr. Nimfa R. Aguila, now a neurologist in Kingman, Arizona, has initiated a fund-drive that raised money for some blood bank equipment, and now the facility is nearly fully functional.
A couple more equipment are needed, but another fund-raiser, more permanent in nature is underway.
Called Wall of Fame, this entails a pledge of $100 a year donation from some prominent Boronganons from around the world. So far, several dozens have made the pledge.
The national Philippine Red Cross is providing support by paying for some of the blood bank employees, including the services of medical technologists.
At the Fun Run, participants paid a P100 registration per runner, with several coming in as groups, including the local contingent of the Philippine Army.