Students raise funds for PUJ drivers
Caecent No-ot Magsumbol (The Freeman) - July 2, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — A group of student-officers from different schools has joined forces to come up with a fundraising project called “Project TsuperHero” (PTH).

The fundraising effort from student-officers and alumni from the Cebu Institute of Technology-University, the University of Cebu-Main and the University of San Jose-Recoletos, along with the support of some non-government organizations, is to help jeepney drivers who lost their income for almost three months now.

The IATF has not allowed PUJs plying the streets in areas under the enhanced community quarantine in which Cebu City is in.

The management team of this project noted that since jeepney drivers do not have income, some have resorted to collecting garbage and begging on the streets for their families to survive.

Other than that, the team has also noted that the PUV Modernization Program which started in 2017 will end this month. Public Utility Jeepneys (PUJ) that are at least 15 years old will be replaced by a newer, safer, and environment-friendly modern jeepney.

“Change can be good or bad, depending on how you see it and for most of our jeepney operators and drivers, whose livelihood depends solely on their jeepneys, they see this change as a threat,” part of the PTH's statement read.

The Pagkakaisa ng mga Samahan ng mga Tsuper at Operator Nationwide (PISTON) and Kilosang Mayo Uno (KMU) had said that over 600,000 PUJ drivers and 300,000 small operators will be “massacred” by the program.

With the halt of mass public transportation due to the pandemic, most drivers and operators could no longer afford modernizing their jeepneys and complying with the ‘new normal’ requirements.

With this, the Project TsuperHearo came about with the aim of raising at least P100,000 to aid PUJ families whose livelihood has been affected by the pandemic.

The funds that will be raised will be for the purchase of goods.  If they will be able to get more, the team is looking for ways to help the jeepney drivers get another source of income through training for other skills and livelihood programs.

The team plans to partner with ROTARACT to help in the fundraising and distribution of goods and with JPICHE for the livelihood programs.

To maintain an honest partnership, emails shall be sent of the progress and the team can be reached through our official Facebook page- as well as for those who want to help in their cause.  GAN (FREEMAN)

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