James Hardie opens doors of opportunities for Yolanda survivors

Every carpentry workshop conducted by James Hardie
was in-depth and hands-on providing a learning platform
for carpenters to further their skills.
When typhoon Yolanda hit Eastern Visayas, particularly the provinces of Samar and Leyte, the world saw a super typhoon could easily wipe out towns and cities from the map and leave behind scores of casualties.

Almost two years after the catastrophic event, a lot of residents from the typhoon stricken provinces are now almost back on their feet especially those who were eager to kick-start their lives by learning new things during the rehabilitation efforts from different organizations.

James Hardie, the world leader in fiber cement building products, partnered with De La Salle Philippines (DLSP) to create a lasting and effective change on some of the most-badly hit communities.

In rebuilding the communities, James Hardie organized a successful basic carpentry workshop earlier this year wherein survivors were taught how to install HardieFlex® building products and eventually make a living out of their newly acquired skills.

“We wanted to extend help that will have lasting effects for the survivors—something that will be beneficial to them for the rest of their lives,” said James Hardie Country Manager Mark Sergio. “By holding carpentry workshops, we are teaching them how to be self-sufficient in rebuilding their communities.”

During the workshop, carpenters did not only learn basic carpentry
 but also went home confident of their newly acquired skill
Few months after the workshop, James Hardie and DLSP went back to the community and asked how the carpenters are doing. 

“The workshops were really a big help for all of us, especially for people who did not know where to start after their traumatic experiences,” said Danilo Galos, a Yolanda survivor from one of the partner communities. “The workshops and all the assistance gave us a fresh start. After the training, I landed a job within a week, which was a great help for my family. Learning how to install HardieFlex is also an advantage because a lot of customers would prefer to use it.”

Arturo Moramion shared the same sentiments, saying that learning the right way of installing HardieFlex® on timber and metal furring did him some good after it made him a better carpenter. “The training was a big help on my work and I was able to share this new knowledge to my co-carpenters. I also learned how to install and handle HardieFlex products, which are all durable, resistant to fire and termites and does not contain asbestos.”

Meanwhile, for Cesar Moralida and Ricardo Cabiao, the workshop opened doors of opportunities for them after they both landed new jobs, which helped them rebuild what was destroyed during the typhoon. “I landed a new job in just a week which helped me provide for my family,” Cabiao said.

“I’m not a full-time carpenter. However, because of the training given by James Hardie, I am now confident that I have the skills to work as a full time carpenter.” Moralida said.

Almost two years after the devastation, the communities that benefited from James Hardie and DLSP’s efforts have shown dramatic change. With the participants showing that they are now on the right track, the two institutions are successful in inspiring people to rise above their situation. Indeed, through collective effort, nothing is impossible, as what James Hardie and DLSP have shown.

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