Showing posts from November, 2013

Student's aspirations for persons with disabilities

Teary-eyed, West Visayas State University Miss Education 2013 aspirant Mary Gail Buñol shares why she took up a course that will prepare her to a future of caring for persons with disabilities (PWDs).

“I grew up in a family with members who have disabilities. My aunt had intellectual disability and my cousin has hearing impairment,” said Buñol, fourth year student taking up Bachelor of Science in Special Education with specialization in teaching children with mental retardation. “Since I was little, some family members had difficulty understanding what our PWD members wanted to say, what they wanted to eat or do. I consider this a gift that I can understand them even if what they’re saying is unclear,” she said.

“Sadly, my aunt died last August. I was devastated because I took this course especially for her, so that I can teach her how to count from one to 10 or learn the alphabet at least. But what can I do, her life was cut off,” she lamented. “A special person in my life told me that w…

Ilonggos fulfill poor students’ dreams to finish college

For an 18-year-old student like Kristine Kate Villanueva who comes from a poor family, having an education and finishing a college degree is a luxury that she can’t afford. But because another individual chose to “adopt” her, this dream is now a reality.Villanueva is the youngest child in a brood of six. Their father left, so it was their mother who is taking care of their needs from the income she derives from cooking and selling “puto” and “bitso-bitso”.

She helps her mother with their small business during her free time, including evenings.

While making “puto” and “bitso-bitso”, she also opens her notes so that she can study at the same time.

“During class, I am always tired because I help my mother,” Villanueva said. The family’s sleeping arrangement at their “little home” in the middle of the public market adds to the challenge.

The family members sleep in shifts because their living space cannot accommodate them sleeping all at once.

Despite her difficulties, she said,  “I never thoug…

Who says senior citizens are not active?

Here’s from one senior citizen to another: Remain active.

Paul Castaneda, 69, and member of the Sto. Rosario Senior Citizens Association in Brgy. Rosario, Duran, Iloilo City advised his fellow senior citizens to continue being active.

While those in their twilight years are already experiencing body pains and other ailments, he said that the best remedy to forget about these is through smiling and laughing.
“As a senior citizen, I feel better when I smile and laugh. I’m also used to hard work since I was young, so it’s the same until now. I clean the floors at home and then cook meals for my family,” he said.

He added that he also does carpentry work and laundry.

He’s also an artist, being good at lettering and drawing. “I was the official decorator of our office for 20 years during gatherings when I was working with WG &A,” he reminisced.

“So, if you’re able, exercise and work. Keep yourself busy,” he said. “Also, whatever comes, accept but not to the point that you will have regret…

Students sacrifice allowance to help typhoon survivors

Everybody has a heart to share. This is one example how the inherent spirit to share actually needs a vehicle for it to manifest, otherwise, it will dissipate. Mentors guiding their students. And these students will eventually be wonderful mentors, too. News like this makes me happy. So I'm sharing this story from the Iloilo Provincial Capitol .....
ILOILO – Thousands of students from Iloilo National High School (INHS) sacrificed their one day meal and transportation allowance forFridayto help the victims of Super Typhoon “Yolanda” in Northern Iloilo.
This is according to Dr. Riza Amaguin, the school’s former principal who went to the office of Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. yesterday (Nov. 14, 2013) to inform the latter of the school’s initiative.
“The school, now headed by Dr. Nordy Siason, declared a ‘typhoon holiday’ and the students set aside their whole day allowance to donate it to typhoon-ravaged schools in the province,” Amaguin said.
The retired principal, currently serving as…

Iloilo City signs Climate Change Pact

Groups like MISSION (Movement of Imaginals for Sustainable Societies Through Initiatives, Organizing and Networking) of which I am a member, are yearning for policies and programs that push for sustainability in our community.
So, this development (see story below) comes as a good news.
As we take steps towards sustainability, may these baby steps include "walking the talk" through the kind of lifestyles that we lead.


Iloilo City signs Climate Change Pact

Stakeholders from the government and private sector signed the “Iloilo City Declaration on Climate Change Actions” at the end of the two-day Citywide Consultation for Local Climate Change Action Planning Nov. 11-12.
The commitment signing was prelude to the actual mainstreaming of the climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction strategies in the city’s Comprehensive Development Plan.
“The body has finally reached a level of commitment to plan and act accordingly to confront and mitigate the…

'Yolanda' devastation to spur climate action

The outpouring of sympathy for the countries hit by super typhoon Haiyan should translate to substantial progress in the United Nations climate change conference opening today in Warsaw, according to Filipino climate activists. “The Philippines cannot afford low expectations and stagnant discussions toward a 2015 climate deal, set to be implemented only in 2020. The rest of the world cannot do so, either,” said Voltaire Alferez, national coordinator of climate network Aksyon Klima Pilipinas.

“Climate change has stacked more odds against us, setting us up for strong typhoons such as Haiyan and already costing hundreds, if not thousands of lives of Filipinos. We demand concrete action in Warsaw, owed to us by the richer countries which are mostly responsible for global warming,” he added. Haiyan pounded central Philippines last Friday, after hitting Palau, and has already made landfall in Vietnam. It was touted as the world’s strongest typhoon this year as well as the strongest ever typhoo…

Irresponsible pet ownership a threat to humans

Abandoning dogs, which is one example of irresponsible pet ownership is seen as a threat to humans and other dogs after a canine rescued by the Animal Welfare Association-Iloilo in Brgy. Cuartero, Jaro, Iloilo City recently showed that it had rabies.

Rabies is a virus transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. It affects the brain and results to death. Initially, a person infected with rabies experiences fever, headache and weakness. Prior to death, the symptoms are anxiety, confusion, insomnia, partial paralysis, hallucinations, increase in saliva, difficulty in swallowing and fear of water.
ABANDONED DOG “The case of Yael was reported to AWA-Iloilo through Facebook by Lilia Mondejar Marquez, the same person who also adopted him after he was rescued,” said Krista Filermeo, AWA-Iloilo volunteer and rescuer.

“His owner left for Hong Kong and abandoned him. He was tied up to a tree with no shelter from rain or sun. He climbed the tree so he can rest well because the ground was already…

Snakes, tarantulas as exotic pets in Panay

Iguanas, snakes, scorpions and other exotic animals are best friends for the not-so-faint at heart and for those who are aware that these creatures are just misunderstood. Like the 50-member Exotic Pets Group of Panay (EPGOP) which was formed through social networking site Facebook on Sept. 22, 2011.

“Our group aims to aid in the conservation of both native and foreign wildlife species through captive breeding programs; to enrich knowledge and eliminate misinformation regarding exotic pets; and to promote responsible pet-keeping,” said Genesis Steel Paspe who owns a guinea pig and ball python.

“Our first eyeball was on December 2011 and after a couple of months, we had monthly gatherings to welcome new members. The group started being active in the community in 2012,” added Paul Tristan Sianson Huyong, owner of a ball python named Tamashi and a carpet python named Teemo.

Nathan Sotto, who owns sugar gliders named Salt and Pepper, initiated the one-year-old project “Zoom” or Zoo on the Mov…

Pinching, insults are forms of child abuse -- lawyer

We often see parents and other adults pinch or hurl insults at children, thinking that they have the right to do so, but a lawyer said that these, too are forms of child abuse. “Something as simple as pinching a child is a form of child abuse, based on Republic Act 7610. The law is very broad as even the psychological abuse is covered. That’s also child abuse when you intentionally demean a child.  Examples are when you call a child stupid or useless. Everyone has a right to call the parent and guardian’s attention if they are abusing their children,” said Atty. Carol Salvatierra, president of the Women Law Advocates of the Philippines, Inc.–Iloilo Chapter, said.

RA 7610 is otherwise known as Special Protection of Children Against Child Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.

She said some examples of child abuse are; (1) Failure to provide the basic needs of a child; (2) Failure to immediately give medical treatment to an injured child resulting in serious impairment of his growth a…

Jail time for irresponsible animal owners

Republic Act No. 8485 or the Animal Welfare Act of 1998 aims to protect animal welfare in the Philippines. Some of the highlights of the act are:
Section 1. It is the purpose of this Act to protect and promote the welfare of all animals in the Philippines by supervising end regulating the establishment and operations of all facilities utilized for breeding, maintaining, keeping, treating or training of all animals either as objects of trade or as household pets. For purposes of this Act, pet animals shall include birds.
SECTION 2. No person, association, partnership, corporation, cooperative or any government agency or instrumentality including slaughter houses shall establish, maintain and operate any pet shop, kennel, veterinary clinic, veterinary hospital, stockyard, corral, stud farm or zoo for the breeding, treatment, sale or trading, or training of animals without first securing from the Bureau of Animal Industry a certificate of registration.
Section 4.  It shall be the duty of an…

Are you afraid of death?

I exist. I will always exist. I am the eternal spark of life Only temporary in this mortal frame The body will die But I will never die. - Jagad Guru (Author of Who are You?)
There’s a true story of a woman whose husband died after being married for 50 years. She said, “The pain is so great that it’s ripping my heart apart.” It's like undergoing surgery without anesthesia.
When a loved one dies, those left behind feel pain because of the separation. If the attachment is so great, the surviving spouse will not stay long as they can’t live alone.

“It’s normal to cry because after all you have been together with your loved ones for years. It is not bad to shed tears because crying is not a symptom of weakness. But not to the point that it will lead to your own death, too. One saintly person said, the greatest illusion in life is to think that only others die and we forget our own death. In fact, at the time of death we are all feeling hopeless, lost and afraid.”

“But, if you have knowledge abou…