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Category: Individual Adult Category SOV Awardee FY: 2019

Engineer Cristeta G. Gallano, 61 years old, from Davao City is a Chemical Engineer with a post graduate course in Urban and Regional Planning.

By using her skills and profession, Engr. Gallano has been volunteering for fifteen (15) years in the areas of poverty alleviation, capacity-building and environmental protection advocacy.

Engr. Gallano prepared project proposals, led in the networking for fund-sourcing with various private local and international donors and the local government and coordinated the implementation of the "Feed the Children" Project and "Build-A-Home" Project of the Catanihan Foundation.

The "Feed the Children" is a daily lunch feeding program for around 110 Grade I underweight and malnourished pupils of Catalunan Grande Elementary School in Davao City. The project aims to improve the health status of malnourished children and integrate sanitation education in the school.

The "Build-A-Home" Project on the other hand aims to provide free decent shelter for 32 indigent families also in Catalunan Grande. It operates in the spirit of kapitbahayan relying on the cooperation and generosity of the people and organizations where the donors provide the materials while the beneficiaries provide the labor for house construction. The completed 22 households now live together in a community and govern themselves to maintain peace and harmonious relationship.

Engr. Gallano is also an active volunteer of Caritas Davao for the past 18 years and has been engaged in medical and disaster response services and in the Catholic Values Formation Program for fellow volunteers.

With her academic and professional expertise, Engr. Gallano provided assistance in the completion of researches for the HELP Davao Network and the Davao River Basin Management Alliance (DRBMA) project aimed to strengthen the protection and development of the Davao River Basin. The project improved water resources of six (6) barangays in Davao City and part of Bukidnon province. The researches also enhanced the capacities of local government units and other organizations in integrated water resource management, sustainable development goals scorecard and environmental protection advocacy.

For Engr. Gallano, volunteering is not without challenges. In her long years of working with the government, private sector, faith-based groups and international organizations, she encountered conflicts, limited resources, communication difficulties, and mobility facility. She was able to rise above these challenges with her motivation to meet the mission of the organization she serves and she considers it a bonus to be a blessing to the people she is able to help through her volunteer services.

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