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Milktea for PPE: A bayanihan drive for frontliners amid a pandemic



Images: Jobe/Facebook/httpswfirnews

As the covid-19 pandemic continues to rear its ugly head in our country, we are left with no choice but to fight off this with all our health professionals standing on the frontline.

But in this battle against this unseen enemy, the lack of medical supplies and personal protective equipment poses a big challenge leading the frontliners being infected themselves by the dreaded disease.

And at these trying times, as people begin to empathize with the hardships and dilemma of those in the frontline of this battle, we can’t help but feel ecstatic by the increased sense of humanity and communal compassion being afforded by some for those in the battlefront.

Yes, the spirit of Bayanihan is so alive in our hearts and here is a story of an Aklanon nurse and her impeccable act of Bayanihan in this coronavirus crisis.


Jobe Ann N. Narvaez, is a 28 year old registered nurse at Madalag Rural Health Unit. She’s also a native of the said place.

According to Jobe, considering herself as a frontliner, she finds it difficult to serve the barrio without an equipment.

Also, I find it hard to see my colleagues unprotected,” she said.

I have in mind around January to start a milk tea business but I can’t start right away. When the Pandemic started I got the best reason to start it.”

I wanted my sister and cousin to see and feel the essence of giving and consider the importance of being blessed as well as the responsibility that goes with it so I told them, we should work on something to help kasi maski students pa eang kamo you can be of help,” she said, as she encouraged her sister and cousin to start the campaign to help in time of crisis.

Jobe wanted to help the frontliners by asking for donations but the 28-year-old nurse has been finding a way not to burden those who would wish to donate for the cause.

Yes, we should help our frontliners pero do ga-donate dapat no need man ma-burden in the process,” she said.


Now you can donate when you buy, drink and eat with SamiTEA. Jobe came up with the initiative to have a milk tea business and donate all the profit for the provision of PPE in the RHU.

Me and my siblings decided to sell milk tea and all the profits will be purchased for improvised PPE (mask, face shields and raincoats).” She wrote on March 31 on her Facebook page.

Kaming magmaeanghod nag disider na magbaligya it milktea ag tanan na kitaon for 2 weeks (I-extend namon basta kaya) hay ibakae it mga PPE (mask, face shields ag raincoats) it mga frontliners, unahon anay namon do sa among banwa, do iba namon nga kilaea nga wa sa Aklan nag amot para mabakae namon among kinahangean, bukon man gid ra it abu, improvised pero at least mayad eon da kesa sa owa it may magamit. Ihatod kinyo inyong order ag ibakae namon it gamit do inyong gin bayad (Madalag area). Malisod man ngani kara makapamakae pero usuyan it paagi. Wa’t ibang intensyon politikal or kun ano pa basta maka produce eang kami bisan pila sa abot it among makaya. Saeamat.”

“The consumers are already helping our frontliners when they buy and patronize our products. That’s the beauty of it.”

They can help maski kiri by buying our products. Nabusog na sila, nakabulig pa sanda.”


SamiTEA just started on March 30, 2020. Jobe herself admits that she is a milk tea, tea and coffee lover.

This is the trend nowadays. So we just want to follow what is the trend and since the milk tea craze has completely invaded the sensibilities of this generation, we would like to extend the business as much as possible in the future,” said Jobe.

SamiTEA also offers french fries, nachos and cheeseballs.

Please enjoy our tea variations and food while you help our frontliners.”
The small business has already donated 15 plastic raincoats, 1 gallon of sanitizer and 1 gallon of alcohol to Madalag Rural Heal Unit and to barangays where Jobe has been assigned to work.

They also donated 15 washable masks, alcohols, Vitamins to Barangay Health Workers.

Jobe said they also helped in providing10 washable face masks and 15 face shields for food handlers and checkpoints personnel.

She said she is really grateful for all the help and donations especially from her older sister who is currently working abroad including the latter’s circle of friends who are also nurses.

Be vigilant in protecting yourselves because who’s gonna protect everyone pag naubos kayo. We salute your efforts and may we survive this together,” Jobe said to her fellow frontliners.

Indeed in these hard times, it’s easy to feel distressed and frustrated with the news you read and heard around, but this spirit of Bayanihan will surely restore our hope and belief in humanity…and towards fellow Filipinos.

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