In solidarity with the country and the world in this time of health crisis caused by the Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, the Port Management Office of Misamis Oriental/Cagayan de Oro rather celebrated its 45th anniversary on 15 April 2020 by helping with bayanihan the most vulnerable and providing simple meal treats to the security and utility personnel who are also regarded as frontliners, the unsung heroes (bayani) in this trying time; thus, the anniversary theme, “BAYANIhan sa Pantalan.”

Amid confronted with challenges such as mandatory social distancing and prohibition of mass crowding, the PMO was still able to kick-off the celebration with a Eucharistic Mass through online streaming to offer thanksgiving and gratitude to the Almighty Father for the continuing guidance, protection, and blessings bestowed upon the PMO. The Mass was virtually participated by employees in their respective workstations including those in the terminal ports, and those who are working from home.

The Eucharistic Celebration was presided by Fr. Mars Tan, the incoming University President of Xavier University-Ateneo de Cagayan. Fr. Mars who used to preside masses in the PMO every other Fridays, has been also engaging with PMO MO/C for various environmental projects as the Director of McKeough Marine Center of Xavier University—Ateneo de Cagayan (XUMMC). XUMMC spearheaded the Coral Resource Assessment and Marine Debris Audit (CoReMar), and the Mangrove Mapping Project, among other projects which the PMO MO/C actively took part in.

Immediately thereafter, 132 bags of food items which were laboriously prepared by PMO personnel, were turned over to the Stella Maris-Apostleship of the Sea for the distribution of the same to the porters and families of seafarers at CDO Port. These are members of the port community who are much affected by this prevailing crisis owing to the temporary stoppage of passenger vessels. The bags contained kilos of rice, canned goods, packs of powdered milk, and instant noodles.

This is the third tranche of the PMO’s donation of relief goods to the said beneficiaries. In the spirit of bayanihan, these relief efforts are in partnership with various organizations, in line with the Philippine government’s call for a whole-of-government approach against the pandemic towards the delivery and provision of essential necessities such as foods to the most vulnerable, among other major objectives under the new RA 11469, or the Bayanihan  to Heal as One Act.

Additionally, face masks were distributed to port users and clients for free to promote wearing of face masks while in public places as mandated by LGU ordinances.

The PMO personnel then enjoyed a simple meal by lunch.