Cebu has another go-to group during times of disasters. A start-up emergency responder group composed of young professionals and college students has been offering emergency response services.
The Rescue Operation Volunteers and Emergency Responders Corp., or ROVER, which has been registered with the Security Exchange Commission as a non-stock corporation, officially started on June 2018.
(L-R) Michael John Taboada, Ms. Metzi Ella Signar, Ms. Sheree Mae Brizo and Mr. Caesar Noel E. Salvan
ROVER started as a group of friends who belong to different outdoor enthusiast clubs sharing a common advocacy of helping others by sharing their knowledge and skills.
It is a free-standing composite emergency light response search and rescue unit with a purpose to respond to disasters, emergencies, and other major calamities within the Philippines and categorized as part of the Civilian Volunteers Organization (CVO), and a non-partisan entity.
Its mission is to provide the highest quality and up-to-date emergency medical services available to the communities we serve as well as facilitate the education and training of our stakeholders.
ROVER’s core values are Respect for Others; Sense of Ownership; Volunteerism; Education and Training; and Resilience.
Some of their members are former Red Cross volunteers, mountaineers, bush crafting, and licensed amateur radio operators. They are professional individuals with specific skills in the field of medical, education, finance, engineering, and information technology.
Initially, the founding members planned on the group focusing more as stand-by medics and communicators.
However, some organizations and local government units have requested ROVER to provide training on first aid and basic life support. In fact, the group has adopted a school in Mandaue City, providing training every weekend.
The training ROVER offers for individuals and companies include Basic First Aid (BFA); Basic Life Support (BLS); Outdoor 101; Wilderness First Aid (WFA); Bush Craft and Survival Skills; Motor Vehicular Accident (MVA) Helmet Removal; Basic Vehicle Crash Rescue Extrication; Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Operation; and Other Disaster Preparedness Training.
The group’s training and other activities that were lined up were put on hold during the lockdown as a result of the pandemic.
With the restrictions of movements lifted, some individuals have expressed interest in joining the group.
The group is continuously improving its operations through training, state-of-the-art rescue tools acquisition, and member preparation to provide the best possible emergency patient care and community service.
ROVER started with 24 members, all professionals. However, the group started training college students, who eventually decided to join the group. Presently, they have 51 active members.
Since ROVER is just a start-up volunteers group, it has limited number of equipment and logistics support so they could meet the growing demand for their services.
The officers of Rover are president John Carl G. Ngujo, a nurse by profession; Engr. Justin Ianne P. Abella (vice president); Angelie May Y. Cabanilla (secretary); Caesar Noel E. Salvan (treasurer); Ronald C. Arinas (auditor); and Sheree Mae B. Brizo (press relation officer).
(L-R) Ms. Metzi Ella Signar, Mr. Michael John Taboada, Mr. Caesar Noel E. Salvan and Ms. Sheree Mae Brizo
Those interested to join or help provide response tools and materials to ROVER can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact mobile numbers 0916-246-2119 (Globe) and 256-4519 (landline).