The coronavirus pandemic has taken its toll on almost everything. One industry greatly affected is the airline industry where almost all airlines around the world had to suspend commercial operations due to countries and states closing their borders to prevent the spread of the virus. These left many airline cabin crew facing uncertainties.
Despite uncertainties however, there are some cabin crew that did not allow the situation to stop them from providing for their family and themselves. Unfazed by all challenges and hurdles, these flight attendants did not stop looking for ways to move forward, regardless of what others may say.
For cabin crew members Lorrie May Parungao of Pan Pacific Air, Michael Jacob Pornel of Philippine Airlines, and Jaypee Ramos of Cebu Pacific, what matters most is to rise to the occasion, and not to allow problems to consume them.
Lorrie May Parungao
In order to make ends meet, this flight attendant is a fishball vendor during her offs in order to be able to provide for her family.
Meet Lorrie May Parungao, a flight attendant of Pan Pacific Airlines. During her off especially now, she sells fish balls and refreshments in order to make ends meet, being the breadwinner of her family and a mother to one.
Lorrie May shares, "Kinalakihan at nakasanayan pagtitinda kailanman ay hindi ikakahiya. Despite this pandemic that has affected employment worldwide especially the flying industry, nothing will stop me from continuing to look and provide the best for my family.
Fishball business muna habang lockdown, ito ang bagay na ng buhay sa aking paglalakbay patungo sa pagiging F.A. Maramaing salamat sa Aking mga magulang na akoy inying minulat sa maraming kasanayan sa buhay na aking madadala saan man at kailan man.
From a simple family vendor and a farm earning family, di ko kailanman ito Ipag-kakaila. Hanap buhay parin para sa pamilya at pinaka mamahal na anak.
Never Let your past experiences be a hindrance to your future and dreams.
Always be grateful for all that have happened in our lives. It will be our fuel for our dreams. Never forget where we came from, it will always lead and teach us to aim and soar high."
Michael Jacob Pornel
This is Michael Jacob Castigador Pornel, a flight steward of Philippine Airlines. As we all know, our local airlines have suspended flights for more than two months, leaving quite a number of their crew with less to no income. However, this does not mean that its the end of the road. Michael decided to make ends meet to support his family by creating a "food trike" and sell Pares alongside a street in his hometown!
Michael says, "Ano man ang narating o estado mo sa buhay. Basta malinis ang hangarin at nasa tama, wag mong ikakahiya ang ginagawa mo para umunlad. Diskarte at sakripisyo mo ang bubuhay sayo at sa Pamilya mo. Hindi opinyon ng iba."
"Diskarte hindi arte" is what Cebu Pacific flight steward Jaypee Ramos said. As flights have been suspended due to the ECQ, Jaypee found ways and means to make ends meet in order to support his parents and his two other siblings.
He started by being a meat vendor in their barangay in San Simon, Pampanga. With the money he made and of course, his savings, Jaypee started selling fish and meat in other barangays with his "mobile palengke".
Presently, Jaypee is also a distributor of facial products.
These are just three of many stories of flight attendants who went beyond the limits and boundaries in order to rise above this pandemic. Their stories have become a source of hope for other flight attendants facing a great amount of uncertainty, especially in a time when airlines are downsizing and survival has become a necessity.
For Lorrie, Michael, and Jaypee, it doesn't matter what others may say, its simply all about moving forward amidst the uncertainties. "Diskarte hindi arte" ika nga. While it is okay to also feel bad when the unthinkable happens, we should not allow the situation to consume us. These three cabin crew proves that there is always hope and that light will always shine at the end of the tunnel for as long as we keep going and strive.
#AsensoCabinCrew program of Flyhigh Manila
The #AsensoCabinCrew program is geared towards providing present flight attendants with hope and encouragement in the face of uncertainty. As you all know, the biggest concern these flight attendants have should the unthinkable happen is income. Some are breadwinners and almost all have obligations to take care of like the education of children, necessities, and bills.
The AsensoCabinCrew is aimed to give affected cabin crew members encouragement and hope that there is always a way to climb and jump these hurdles facing them.
It plans to do this by:
Let us not forget that Cebu Pacific founder John Gokongwei Jr.'s empire began when he started going around the streets in his area selling different items and products.
Flight attendants are built tough, especially in a career where they are ready to put their own personal lives on the line in order to save others. Tough situations don't last, but tough people do.
It doesn't what others may say. Wag ikahiya ang ginagawa mo. Basta wala kang naaapakan at para sa mabuti ang ginagawa mo, ipagpapalain kayo ng Diyos. "Diskarte" is what will get you to rise above all the hurdles.