SUBIC BAY FREEPORT – A vocational education training center designed to develop the livelihood skills of residents from disaster-stricken areas in the country has been inaugurated here by the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and the Royal Charity Organization (RCO) of the Kingdom of Bahrain.
Senator Richard Gordon, who is also PRC chairman, and Dr. Mustafa Alsayed, RCO secretary-general, led the recent ribbon-cutting and turnover ceremony for the facility located at the former Naval Magazine area in this free port.
Gordon said the center is part of the recovery projects that Bahrain’s RCO had promised to fund to help improve the lives of victims of Typhoon Haiyan, locally known as Yolanda, which devastated several parts of the country in November 2013.
The center will offer training courses in electrical installation and maintenance, plumbing technology, carpentry, masonry, commercial cooking, bread and pastry production, seafarers rating, and a finishing course for call center agents.
Gordon said the vocational training center will help ensure sustainable growth through education to families hit by disasters.
“The center will provide people with market-driven skills and training so they can secure steady, well-paying jobs,” Gordon said during the inauguration.
Alsayed, meanwhile, was ecstatic over the opening of the Subic vocation training center and expressed hope that it will produce students who will use their education to uplift their calamity-stricken community.
The PRC has previously established its logistics center for local and international disaster-response operations in the same area.
The training center has four rooms that consist of two workshop rooms, an equipment storage area and one administration office. It can seat 30 to 40 students at a time, or from 15 to 20 students for laboratory sessions.
Gordon and Alsayed also inaugurated a similar vocational training center a day before the Subic launch in Tacloban City, which was worst-hit by Typhoon Yolanda.
The PRC training center in the Subic Bay Freeport was constructed at a cost of around P7.8 million, while the facility in Tacloban cost around P5.3 million, said PRC Secretary General Oscar Palabyab.
Palabyab added that the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority will also play a big role in the project, since it will be accrediting the students who will graduate from courses taken at the PRC training center.
PHOTO: Sen. Richard Gordon and Bahrain Royal Charity Organization secretary-general Dr. Mustafa Alsayed (center) link arms with other Red Cross and RCO officials in a symbol of unity during the inauguration of the PRC Training Center in the Subic Bay Freeport.