Sendong Savior

For Leonisid “Enie” Alsonado life was coming along well, with his high profile job as a program director and commentator for RMN Iligan, and a family who loved him dearly. Approached by a CARD (Center for Agricultural and Rural Development) agent with a microinsurance package provided by Pioneer, he was hesitant, then agreed to be covered.

When Typhoon Sendong hit Iligan in December 2011, the timeliness of this decision to obtain coverage came to fore. Due to the continuous downpour, the river near their village overflowed causing a flashflood in the village. Enie, Rachelle and their son moved to evacuate when the waters began to rise quickly. They were in a truck when they were overtaken by rushing waters. Enie grabbed on to his son as Rachelle struggled to reach them. Enie handed Rachelle their son just as he was swept away by the strong current. His body was found buried in mud the day after.

As if the death of a loved one was not enough, Rachelle and her young son found themselves homeless – their home was buried in mud and all that was left intact was a bathroom and the kitchen sink. The insurance they took out was their only fallback. Through the insurance coverage, Rachelle was able to claim for burial assistance of P20,000, a personal accident plan of P100,000 and property assistance worth P9,500. Through this claim, her beloved Enie had a decent burial and she was able to re-build their house, continue her sari-sari store business and had enough money left for her son’s education. Some 5 months later, Rachelle’s house is one of the few that has been rebuilt in the community.

The story of Enie’s family and their experience with Pioneer spread around Iligan quickly. RMN Iligan shared Enie’s story and encouraged listeners to think about insurance. For saving the lives of his partner and son, and for leaving behind something for them to rebuild their lives, Enie was a hero not just once, but twice.
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