DANNY, our partner in the Philippines, wears many hats. He is presently the head of National Commission for Art Galleries of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts of the Philippines. He is also an art curator and a visual artist, a corporate executive, a resource speaker, and in 2014, he became a humanitarian worker.

Super-typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines on November 7, 2013. Haiyan killed over 6,000 people and left 4 million homeless. It was the deadliest ever recorded in human history. Many humanitarian groups got to work directly after: there would be years of rebuilding after a disaster such as this. 

Danny with his wife, holding up a paper in the shape of a heart.

Haiyan was a call-to-action for Danny. He helped in various humanitarian relief operations and was involved in the recovery and rehabilitation of the victims of Haiyan. That was when he realized his new calling: ‘a new hat – a humanitarian worker.’

Amidst his artwork, humanitarian ventures, and disaster response, Danny keeps very busy. One of Danny’s interests is quite unique: Danny is an ostrich egg artist, creating and carving beautiful displays into each egg. Many art shows and exhibitions showcase his artwork. He is also a resources speaker. In chatting with Danny on being a resources speaker, he chuckled and after a pause, jokingly noted,

 “…I talk a lot!”

Danny’s Solution

Danny ascertained that victims of natural disasters–at all times–require shelter, food and water. He connected with various non-governmental organizations to find ways to facilitate the provision to all the victims. In one of his experiences, he facilitated a donation of a 20-foot container of bottled water from another country. Although the donation was generous, it wasn’t an environmentally-friendly donation. It was costly, not sustainable, and a logistical nightmare. 

Danny believes that access to clean, potable drinking water is a basic human right. He searched for a better alternative to bottled water. In his search, he was directed to Business Connect and our Global Director Darin Fey. He was then introduced to our VF100 Water Filter. The VF100 is a portable and complete filtration system that removes 99.99% bacteria, protozoans and viruses. It is the perfect solution for Danny’s disaster response missions. Danny knew right away that the VF100 was a quality filter. He noted that it makes his own already-filtered water even clearer and better quality. 

His first purchase of water filters were brought to Vanuatu of the South Pacific: a time when the area was ravaged by the devastating cyclone Pam. The victims of Pam welcomed the distribution of the VF100 water filter gratefully. Wonderfully, in the isle broadsheet, in an article titled, “Philippines brought water to Vanuatu,” Danny and his work were featured. Danny now carries the VF100 to each of his disaster relief operations. He believes in the product as a formidable solution for disaster sites and rural development areas.

Water Refilling Stations

Private companies known as water refilling stations are where many people allocate water in the Philippines. These businesses provide water and fill consumer’s containers for a per-gallon fee. Danny noted that the price for water has gone down as water refilling stations keep growing across the landscape. The introduction of the VF100, though, has made it so that some of these families no longer have to pay for water. 

Danny joked “We’re practically running them (water refilling stations) out of business!”

Danny’s Water Filter Stories 

After adding the VF100 to his repertoire, Danny could now provide water economically and efficiently to communities in need. Danny lit up when retelling his experiences of traveling around the world, risking his own life, and providing relief to those left resourceless by natural disasters.

Gorkha

In 2015, the Gorkha earthquake shook Nepal “practically… every other hour,” as Danny was there. This was an extremely scary experience for Danny as he was there during the heat of the event. He was there for only 10 days, luckily. Another earthquake struck in the next few days following his departure. Just as frighteningly, the building Danny stayed in collapsed with this next seismic event. Danny was so thankful to get out just in time. 

‘Just a Stream’

Danny told of his venture to the southern Philippines, where typhoon Vinta had just devastated a rural and economically disadvantaged community. The trip included a plane ride and a trip by boat. Danny found out, after speaking with the mayor, that the number one problem in the community was diarrhea and cholera, two water-borne diseases. When Danny found the reason for these issues, it was shocking to him.

“When I checked their source of water… it was just a stream. They said the department of health checked it… they said it passed their standards, and I said, really?” Danny provided. Per the U.S. DNR, though some spring-fed streams are relatively safe, agricultural, human, and animal waste contaminates them easily. 

Danny distributed the VF100 to this community. About a year after the disaster, Danny got back in touch with the village mayor. Incredibly, the cases of cholera and diarrhea had virtually disappeared. With a smile, Danny stated “I can only attribute that to the water filter.” 

Danny also brought the VF100 to aid a series of disasters in Indonesia of the Krakatau volcanic eruption, causing flooding and soil liquefaction;  the catastrophic cyclone Idai that hit Mozambique, and the volcanic eruption Taal, which covered the 15KM radius with ashes and destroyed the water system in the area.

A Challenge to You

You’ve read about Danny’s efforts in bringing the VF100 water filter to communities in need, and the ways in which it has eased those communities of disease and thirst. At Business Connect, we aim to help you do the same – however we can. Want to run a business and become an in-country distributor of our products? We provide this opportunity as well as mentoring and equipment to help you start your project. Click here for questions, concerns, or any interest in becoming a network affiliate!

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