As we usher in a new administration in a few weeks, we continue to recognize how the recent 2016 elections proved the power of each individual Filipino’s vote. The world witnessed how the Filipinos firmly exercised our right of electing new public servants who represented our ideals and vision. Each vote was considered sacred, and protecting this one good vote through correct and valid counting was a task the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting or PPCRV commendably accomplished. For how many days after the elections, PPCRV spearheaded the canvassing of the ballots, delivering their promise of a clean, honest, accurate, meaningful, and peaceful elections.
In completing such a tedious and very important assignment, PPCRV was fueled by volunteers who generously gave their time to carry out the manual audit of the transmitted votes. Through iVolunteer, over 750 volunteers were able to participate in the canvassing of the votes, contributing to the success of the recent elections. They are different individuals with different motivations but all impassioned to serve and leave a mark in the recently concluded elections. And in the whole process of manning and encoding, there were stories shared, new things learned, and additional insights discovered among the volunteers and core members of PPCRV. In achieving a common goal, the volunteers rediscovered inspiration and learned from each other, creating more meaning and fulfillment in their volunteer work. Officers of the PPCRV in turn expressed their admiration and gratitude to those who chose to be involved in the audit.
A heartfelt message of gratitude from Ms. Ana De Villa Singson, PPCRC, Trustee, National Communications and Media Director, PPCRV 2016 National Command Center Head:
“I cannot express how grateful PPCRV is to each and every volunteer who came to the PPCRV Command Center from May 9 until our very last day on June 1. There was never a time when there were no representative volunteers from iVolunteer throughout the post-election monitoring and encoding period. On May 9, you were there manning the call center, running the data from the Comelec Transparency Server Room to the PPCRV Command Center. And from May 10 onwards you were encoding votes from physical copies of pre-transmission election returns, participating in the only manual and national audit of the transmitted votes. Many of you became regulars, selflessly and generously volunteering your time and energy over and over again; and during breaks, over meals, we shared stories and became friends. Mothers came with daughters, epitomizing the maternal bond of the Filipino family and showing that volunteerism and love for nation crosses through generations.
Truly, your participation inspires. It inspires belief that Filipinos are truly good people, searching only for an avenue with which to express themselves. It inspires hope that because of people like you, who invest ideals with action, our country can and will get better; ushering in a leadership that is hopefully responsive, action-oriented, pro-people, God-centered. It inspires goodness too, because generosity inspires more of the same and demands higher standards of action and involvement from others.
PPCRV is very grateful that you chose to spend precious time with us. We laud your volunteerism not only in PPCRV but in the many other worthy causes that you contribute to. Volunteers are truly a nation’s precious resource. May you always be filled with the same passion and may your vision always be that of a better place, a better country, a better you.
On a personal note, I am very proud to have worked shoulder to shoulder with you. I hope to do so again not just in PPCRV but in some of the other causes that you volunteer for.
On behalf of PPCRV, thank you for joining us in giving our very best for CHAMP (Clean-Honest-Accurate-Meaningul-Peaceful) Elections.
With much gratitude and sincere appreciation,
ANA DE VILLA SINGSON”
Jennilyn Redublo of iVolunteer also shares her insights during her PPCRV volunteer activity:
I started my volunteer at PPCRV last May 11 (Wednesday). It has been my plan to help them out when I heard the news from PPCRV that they are in need of volunteers, and without any hesitation and excuses, I planned my visit to help encode election returns every other day for a week.
Aside from encoding election returns, I have also met some people from different walks of life. There were some who came from different dioceses and churches, some who came from work and some who just chose to spend their time by helping. During snack breaks, I got to mingle with different people and exchange stories and I was glad that I got to know more people who had the same reasons as mine on why they came to PPCRV to volunteer. That was also a chance for me to meet new people while we helped together.
I may have come there for three days, but I believe that the small things I did for a short period of time meant a lot for them. I wanted to do something significant for the success of this elections without supporting any parties or candidates, and volunteering for PPCRV was the best option for fulfilling the promise of a CHAMP (Clean-Honest-Accurate-Meaningful-Peaceful) Elections. I did not mind going home late as long as I knew I did something worthwhile.”
The 2016 Elections proved that we Filipinos are capable of responsibly exercising our right to vote, and of letting our voices be rightfully heard and represented. And through this journey, some chose to step-up even further by getting involved in the very crucial ballot canvassing through the PPCRV. Such experience resulted in discovering like-minded individuals with the same level of fervor and commitment to serve. But more significantly, a renewed hope emerged among the volunteers and the different sectors, as we welcome the many opportunities of growth and unity that could bring us towards inclusive progress in the coming years.
After the successful elections, may we continue to be unified in continuing to become the change we want to see in this country, through our individual ways and different contributions.