UNITED States Ambassador Philip Goldberg will open the first Special Olympics on July 14 at the Bicol University Institute of Physical Education, Sports and Recreation Track and Field on Rizal Street, Legazpi City.
He will be joined by Governor Joey Salceda, Bicol University President Dr. Faye Lauraya, mayors, Peace Corps Philippines Director Denny Robertson and Peace Corps Volunteers and Special Olympics Philippines Director Kaye Samson during the 8 a.m. opening ceremony.
Goldberg will also attend a forum on disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation at the Conference Room of the Climate Change Academy starting at 2:15 p.m.
On July 15, the US envoy will visit Tacloban City and Palo town in Leyte to participate in events supported by the US Embassy and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
At 11 a.m., he will attend the closing ceremonies of Pacific Partnership in Patio Victoria, Tacloban City. Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Asia-Pacific region.
At 1 p.m., Goldberg will proceed to Palo I Central School in Barangay Cavite West for the launching of “Preventing Trafficking in Persons (TIP) through Sustainable Livelihood Recovery for Typhoon-Affected People,” a US-funded initiative that seeks to reduce the vulnerability of residents in Ormoc, Leyte through livelihood support and building TIP awareness and response capacity of community leaders.
While at the Palo I Central School, he will also lead the groundbreaking ceremonies for two school buildings that will be constructed and furnished by the US government through USAID Rebuild. The P30.8 million project, which is designed to withstand strong typhoons, flooding and earthquakes, will benefit about 1,920 students.
USAID/Philippines Mission Director Gloria Steele, Department of Education Secretary Armin Luistro, Leyte Gov. Leo–poldo Dominico Petilla and Mayor Remedios Petilla are expected to participate in the groundbreaking ceremonies.
On the same day, Goldberg is also scheduled to attend the groundbreaking ceremony for a road project in Barangay Suruk, Guiuan, Samar.
The project is part of the $434 million grant provided through the Millennium Challenge Corporation in support of three major projects aimed at reducing poverty through economic growth.
While in Guiuan, Goldberg will also visit the coastal area of Barangay Pagnamitan where he will lead the planting of mangroves as part of rebuilding efforts for Super Typhoon Yolanda survivors.
Eastern Samar officials, including those from the Department of Public Works and Highways and the Millennium Challenge Account-Philippines, will join Goldberg at the two activities.