Valdez, top volleyball players raise funds for PPE production

MANILA, Philippines – Volleyball Community Gives Back to the Philippines (VCGBPH), a group led by Gretchen Ho, Charo Soriano, Alyssa Valdez, and Dzi Gervacio, organized an initiative to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) for the country's frontliners in the battle against coronavirus. 

As it takes 2 to 3 weeks to procure PPEs, the group planned on producing its own gear through sewing companies and fashion designers. 

"I read the news everyday about the battles of our doctors, nurses, health workers, and frontliners. And I wanted to help them, to ease their pain, their burden," said Valdez. 

"So I was speaking with Pablo Cabahug about his efforts to produce PPEs in his shop. And he mentioned that they are having difficulty sourcing materials. So I contacted Ate Cha (Soriano) and said it's time we revive VCGBPH." 

VCGBPH aims to produce an initial 2,500 PPEs, but it hopes to make more for the frontliners.

"We wanted to do our part as much as we can. We contacted the rest of our group and planned on how to produce PPEs in the quickest time possible," said Charo Soriano.

"So one option that we thought of is to buy the raw materials and give them to the numerous sewers and designers. This way, we can produce of PPEs as soon as possible, and daily, too." 

The group also thought of starting a  fundraiser called #ServeOurFrontliners: Raffles For Heroes, which will raffle off memorabilia from players including jerseys, training shirts and shoes, for example. 

A person can purchase an unlimited number of raffle tickets that cost P300 each. 

"The idea behind this is to generate as many raffle bundles as possible," said Amy Ahomiro. "Players from PSL, PVL and UAAP are all coming together and pledging their memorabilia for this cause." 

Some of the players who pledged to join the raffle project are Valdez, Ho, Soriano, Ahomiro, Amanda Villanueva, Nicole Tiamzon, Kathy Bersola, AJ Pareja, Tatan Gata-Pantone, Sue Roces, Sasa Devanadera, Thang Ponce, Jen Nierva, Jen Reyes, Kath Arado, Ella de Jesus, Sisi Rondina, Bernadeth Pons, Dennise Lazaro, Jema Galanza and Deanna Wong.

VCGBPH was formed during the wake of Typhoon Yolanda's destruction in 2013, where it raised funds for the victims in Tacloban.

The organization has since been raising funds to help other communities, such as those affected in the Marawi siege in 2017, Typhoon Lawin in 2018, and most recently, the Taal Volcano eruption in January. –