MP Lang-ay Festival to feature ‘Kataguan caravan for a cause’

>> Sunday, March 26, 2017

Scenic spots’ viewing to raise funds for dialysis patients 

By Wabilyn M. Lomong-oy

BONTOC, Mountain Province -- Among highlights of the 50th Mountain Province founding anniversary and 13th Lang-ay Festival is “Kataguan caravan for a cause” (Drive for life) to be held third time with this year’s event set on April 6 to raise funds in favor of dialysis patients from Mountain Province.
The Kataguan Dialysis Patients Organization, Inc. in partnership with the office of Rep. Maximo Dalog conceptualized Kataguan Caravan which was first conducted on April 24, 2015 wherein 54 vehicles joined the activity.  
The Kataguan Dialysis Patients Organization is composed of kidney patients from Mountain Province who are having hemodialysis treatments in different dialysis centers in the country.
It was organized in January 2015 by six patients of Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center. 
Later in January 31, 2015, the first meeting was called and attended by 27 kidney patients who elected their officers.
There are now 104 kidney patients who are members of the group.
The caravan was organized in order to help dialysis patients generate funds for their weekly treatment.
It is also a way of showcasing the bayanihan system wherein the welfare of those in need are prioritized.  
Dalog in an interview said the annual caravan does not only aim to raise funds in favor of dialysis patients but also promote tourism in the province.
He solicited assistance of the public to help by sponsoring tickets of P2,000, P1,000, and P250.
Participants for the caravan will assemble 6 a.m. at Eyeb grounds in this capital town then proceed to Dawdawan, Sabangan.
Since the caravan is also considered a fun ride, stopovers are labeled for the participants to see the beauty of Mountain Province.
First stop is Mt. Polis in Bagnen, Bauko. From there, the ride will continue to Sagada via Taccong Road.
Stopovers will follow at Data Saddle. From there itinerary includes “view of the Sleeping Beauty at Balangagan Cave, walk to the mouth of Sumaguing Cave, then to Lumiang Burial Cave, all in the tourist town of Sagada.
Then participants will proceed to Poblacion Sagada to pray at the Church of Saint Mary the Virgin, then to Sagada Stable, Staunton Road for lunch and a program.
The caravan is expected to draw participants from not only from the province but also local tourists from Baguio and Manila.

Proceeds generated from the activity will be turned over immediately to the organization after the caravan. 


3 cops, bopap commended for public service

BAGUIO CITY – Special commendations were given to three city cops  and certificate of commendation to a punong barangay for dedicated public service and active participation in the city’s anti-criminality program.
SP04 Efren Anapen was cited for providing immediate assistance to a visitor and motorist who had a vehicular problem while traversing  Loakan access road extension earlier this month.
Also commended were SPO3 Virgilio Rebollido Jr. and PO3 Danny Bomogao for apprehending an individual wanted for the crime of robbery with violence that occurred this January along Upper Magsaysay Avenue.
Upper Magsaysay punong barangay Prescilla Dacanay was recognized for active participation in city police’s anti-criminality campaign.
“Such noble contribution bespeaks of her invaluable support to the relentless crime prevention and solution efforts of the BCPO to accomplish its mandate of maintaining peace and order in the City of Baguio, worthy or praise and admiration,” Dacanay’s commendation stated.

Signed by acting city police director Ramil Saculles, the commendations were handed over by city officials headed by Mayor Mauricio Domogan, Rep. Mark Go and Vice-Mayor Edison Bilog in Monday’s flag-raising ceremonies at city hall.- Gaby Keith and Rebecca Tial 


Teams vs anomalies, drugs formed in Lagawe, Ifugao

By Marcelo B. Lihgawon

LAGAWE, Ifugao -- Mayor Martin Habawel, Jr  of this capital town has ordered creation of teams to fight illegal drugs in barangays of this capital town. 
Dubbed “Mamamayang ayaw sa anomalya, mamamayang ayaw sa iligal na droga (Masa Masid),” a team will be formed in 20 barangays of this municipality.
“This is to heighten community involvement by mobilizing the support of local stakeholders, volunteers, civic organizations, faith-based organizations, and the private sectors in the fight against illegal drugs, criminality and corruption,” he  said.
The team will be composed of barangay captain, chairman of the peace and order committee and a representative from nongovernment organization in the community.
The team will be tasked to conduct information and education campaigns, organize forums, seminars and related activities on prevention and demand reduction, coordinate and partner with the schools for possible partnership on information drive against illegal drugs, and secure the support of local media such as radio, print and on the use of social media.
It will also encourage the support of interfaith leaders in incorporating anti-illegal drug advocacy in their services and forge partnership with local organizations whose primary mission is to fight illegal drugs.  

Masa Masid is a barangay-based anti-criminality, anti-corruption, and anti-illegal drugs program which encourages multi-sectoral partnership to intensify the spirit of volunteerism at the community level. 


DepEd Benguet pushes sports tourneys to boost medal hauls

Coaches told: Reign in temper 

By Augustin Dao-anis

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet—Alarmed by its medal standing in the recently concluded 2017 Cordillera administrative Region Athletic Association Meet, provincial Education officials urged its coaches to initiate sports competitions in schools to expose athletes in different levels of tournaments.
An evaluation meeting called for by the Benguet Division Office found out most of the province’s athletes lacked exposure to sports tournaments.
Dean Mark Monang, Benguet provincial government sports coordinator, said during the meeting that there was need to expose the athletes to competitions.
To encourage athletes, the provincial government gives cash incentives to athletes who earned gold, silver, or bronze medal in regional or higher sports competitions as stipulated in provincial ordinance number made in 2015.
Coaches admitted most athletes only participate in DepEd-organized sports competitions like district and provincial athletic meets, which only happen once a year.
Benguet sports coordinator Ceasar Luma-ang and Lucio B. Alawas, school governance and operations development chief, urged coaches to submit sports competition proposals or training designs.
They also required the coaches to submit list of priority sports equipment to be purchased.            
Luma-ang said he supports any move of coaches or trainers in enlisting their athletes to any sports tournaments organized by private organizations provided protocol is observed.
Benguet only earned 33 gold medals, which is lower than its 43 gold medals in last year’s CARAA Meet.
Meanwhile, Alawas cautioned the hot-tempered coaches to control their emotions and observe decency and respect especially during critical judgments during games. “We cannot avoid being angry at times but we should do the proper way,” he said.
Benguet Schools Division Superintendent Federico P. Martin said he received a letter from tournament managers concerning an issue of a coach who allegedly assaulted officiating officials due to unfair officiating last CARAA Meet.
Despite this, Martin recommended inclusion of the coach to the Palarong Pambansa next month.
Meanwhile, Diego Dumapis, a Benguet sports analyst, said there is need for a sports psychologist for the province.

“The coaches should be guided on how they treat their athletes, which would affect their performance,” Dumapis said. “There are coaches, who get angry or shout at their athletes. That should not be.”


WHO: Baguio one of most polluted cities in Philippines

By Dexter A. See

BAGUIO CITY – The World Health Organization named Baguio City as one of the most polluted cities in the Philippines country.
A WHO report said there were  49 micrograms per cubic meter of pollutants in the city’s air based on the test results reported in one of the air quality testing machines installed at the foot of Session Road, right at the heart of the city where many vehicles traverse and where most businesses are located.
Manila and Cebu came in second and third with 22 micrograms per cubic meter each.
According to Councilor Leandro Yangot Jr., said results were partly because of the presence of too many vehicles roaming around the city’s central business district.
He said the situation will expose individuals in high risk status to contracting dreaded diseases such as cancer, stroke or heart ailments.
Following this, the city council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance providing for a Carless Day along Session Road and for other purposes it may serve.
 The ordinance authored by Yangot. stated all motor vehicles will be prohibited to traverse along the stretch of Session Road starting from its foot up to the area fronting the Bank of the Philippine Islands Session and Baguio Post Office.
Yangot clarified in extreme cases such as emergencies or events involving possible threats to life and limb, police cars, fire trucks, emergency medical service vehicles, ambulances among others may enter the declared carless zone to perform their assigned duties and responsibilities.
Under the proposed ordinance, violators of the local legislative measure shall be penalized with a fine of P1,000 for the first offense, P3000 or imprisonment of not more than three months but not less than one month or both fine and imprisonment at the discretion of the court for the second offense and a fine of P5,000 or imprisonment of not more than six months but not less than three months or both fine and imprisonment at the discretion of the court for the third offense.
Yangot said the local government has to act with dispatch to effectively and efficiently address the serious concern considering the health of the public is at stake.
Yangot said the proposed legislation for the adoption of a Carless Day along Session Road will avoid pollution from motor vehicle fumes and decrease the amount of pollutants in the air and also as support to recreation that restores family bonds, friendship and a sense of community involvement to help bring back the seemingly lost connection between man and nature.

He said Carless Day would be beneficial so business persons could  meet new people and learn new things that would improve their operations.


Tabuk micro- coop gets SSF equipment aid

CITY OF TABUK, Kalinga -- A mini-cooperative joined list of more than 24 beneficiaries in the province that received equipment assistance under the Shared Services Facility project of the Department Trade and Industry here.
Sunshine Molintas of DTI-Kalinga reported Kalinga Tawid Development Coop. was latest recipient of dehydrator, band sealer, meat/bone cutter, grinder, chest freezer, chiller and fermentation jars costing P692, 700.
DTI-Kalinga director Grace Baluyan, who turned over the equipments urged the recipients to use the equipments to boost their micro-enterprise saying good performance under the program qualifies the beneficiary to other assistance from the agency.
Meanwhile, Manuel Onalan, KTDC Manager, said the equipment would be great boost to their business.
KTDC is engaged in the processing of coffee, juice, malungay and production of legumes and heirloom rice.   
Under the SSFP, DTI grants equipment aid to micro-cooperators to help and promote organized small entrepreneurship in the countryside.The aid is awarded under a six-year conditional term.
If the recipient-cooperator stops operation of business within the six-year period, DTI can recall the equipments and awards the same to another proponent-cooperator.
But if the business opened by beneficiary-cooperator grows and surpasses the six-year conditional period, DTI turns-over full ownership of the equipments to the cooperator.

The SSF Project was launched in the province in 2012 and had contributed largely in the growth and development of micro-processors. -- Larry T. Lopez


Episcopal Church supports DENR’s Lopez, closure of 23 mining firms

By Gina Dizon

BONTOC, Mountain Province -- The Episcopal Diocese of Northern Philippines in their recent diocesan convention  urged President Rodrigo Duterte to stand firm in his  appointment  of Environment Sec. Gina Lopez and retain her to  bring to realization to good work the her agency is doing to protect the environment.
As of press time, Lopez’s fate as Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources chief  is currently under decision of  Commission on Appointments.
The diocesan convention supported the order of  Lopez to close 23 mining firms and cancel the Mineral Production Sharing Agreements  (MPSA)  of 75 mining  corporations for destroying the watersheds; and allow  restoration and rehabilitation of damaged watersheds.
Diocesan participants while they were  in favor of the resolution also called for necessary measures by government to ensure livelihood of miners and other employees who shall be laid off from their jobs.
Another resolution was forwarded to be formulated following some comments that it’s not only large scale mining  operations destroying the environment but also  small scale mining and cement factories.
Meantime, the diocesan convention participants overwhelmingly opposed the death penalty bill as it against the right to life  and forwarded  their full opposition to extrajudicial killings being done in the war  against drugs. 


K12’s senior high support private schools

Gina P. Dizon

SAGADA, Mountain Province -- With private schools having to source their  own income, the senior high school  program of the Department of Education’s K12 curriculum has proven to be a good source of  finances for private learning institutions.
There are five private schools offering senior high school in Mountain Province namely St Mary School in Sagada, St James High in Besao and three in Bontoc-  St Vincent's High , Xijen College and Mt Province State Polytechnique College  (MPSPC) .  
Former SMS principal Nemia Lite and now with the Dept. of Education-Mountain Province division  said senior high school is indeed helping much in the  financial upkeep of private schools. Lite helped in the application of SMS and her alma mater St James high school get registered as partners of Dep Ed in the department's senior high school program.
A  P17,500 subsidy per  student is given as educational support fund to a  Grade 11 and 12  student.
For St. Mary’s School of Sagada, senior high school students avail of the government assistance to students and teachers in private education through its education service contractive program for its P20,000 per student tuition fee. The government  gives P17,500 for students who finished in  public school and  P14,000 for those who finished in a private school. 
Private schools are suffering from financial  deficits through the years but have managed to  get through with support from donations from their respective alumni, parents and teachers,  and friends.
Enrollment before 1995 showed SMS had been  enrolling some 300 to 400 students per  year. The establishment of nearby Sagada National High School in 1995  however drastically brought the enrollment down by  half. While enrollment has  shown  a significant increase in 2006 due to aggressive  recruitment and promise of scholarship programs, enrollment  reached a 145 to 170 enrollment through the years till  it reached  208 in 2016-2017 due to the opening of senior high school it was learned. 
With the incorporation of senior high school, finances has somehow  alleviated  the  private learning institution’s  perennial deficit for the past years, SMS principal Raquel Killy said.  
There are 64 senior high school students of SMS. Of the 64 are 26 Grade 11 students who have enrolled in science engineering and math (STEM) one of four strands of  senior high school.  Others are  registered  in subjects covering humanities and social sciences (HUMSS). 
Science and math has been the focus of  SMS for quite some time with enough computers, hooked to the internet, and equipped with chemistry and  biology  laboratory.
Killy  said there is still a need to improve the facilities of the school as additional classrooms  to anticipate the coming in of Grade 12.
SMS though managed to  keep to its  toes and forwarded  a P12,000  tuition fee with  subsidy from the government of 6,000 and increased to the current 18,500 with 6,500 to 8,500  subsidy from the  government of what is called ESF for its regular junior high school.
With an P18,500 tuition fee which increased through the  years,  students  receive  subsidy from  government  assistance program  to students and teachers in private education through its   education  service contracting program. the subsidy is  8,500 for grade 7 and 8; and 7500 for grades 9; and 6,500 for grade 10.
Of the current 208  enrolled students less the 64 SHS students  are 62  directly sponsored students  either by alumni or their  relatives. Of the 62 are 19 indigent scholars availing of  financial grants from sponsors. Killy hopes  direct sponsors shall  pay their pledges promptly to  avoid deficit.
Parents who pay tuition of their  children amount to some P10,000 to P12,000 per  school year less government subsidy. There are some 130 students who pay the full tuition fee less the  educational school fund of
P6,000  year.
St. Mary's School  was founded by American missionary Rev. John Staunton in 1904, which was then referred to as a mission school of the Episcopal Church in the Philippines (ECP) financed by her mother church Episcopal Church in the USA (ECUSA).  The  ECP became administratively and financially autonomous in 1990 making the school face financial constraints since then. 

As part of its financial upkeep from student's tuition fees, the school gets subsidy from Dep-Ed and pledges from alumni and friends. Same is true with sister school St James of Besao.


NCCA funds 10 Benguet Schools of Living Tradition

Susan C. Aro

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Preservation of the province’s culture and tradition was boosted as the National Commission on Culture and the Arts allotted funds again this year to School of Living Tradition (SLT) projects.
With the aim of preserving cultural heritage in its living form in the generations to come, SLTs are carried out through a living master or culture bearer possessing the skills and techniques of traditional art or craft through a non-formal, oral and with practical demonstrations.  
Prudencio said the SLTs have big impact in terms of cultural preservation with the goal to let the youth appreciate the traditional practices of their ancestors. Taught are performing arts, indigenous food making and handicrafts.
The approved projects which are in the form of crafts and performing arts are : Training on Ibaloy Performing Arts  by  the Kamora National High School (KNHS); Training on Banayakeo Traditional Bamboo Crafting local government unit of Poblacion Atok ; Training and Workshop for Skilled Gong ‘Gangsa” Makers Cum Production of the Bedbed Senior Citizens Association of Mankayan; Training on Ibaloy Performing Arts of LGU Topdac, Atok; Installation of Local Cultural Icon-Doligen Legendary Rock of LGU Poblacion, Bakun; Bobok-Bisal Cultural Festival of the LGU of Bobok-Bisal, Bokod; Tapey Festival of LGU Poblacion, Bokod, Kapangan Museum Enhancement of  LGU Kapangan; and Sagawsaw Ekip Cultural Festival.
Due its geographical location, Baguio City is also included in the list. The approved proposal is entitled “Multiculturalism and Ethnic Identity: Experiencing Authenticity in the City” to be implemented by the University of Baguio Alumni Foundation.
The NCCA is regularly funding SLT proposals of the Ibaloy and Kankana-ey cluster for the past years. Last year, SLT Center was established Datakan, Kapangan which is intended as a convergence venue for SLTs.


BB nutritionist-dietitians’ group bags 6thnat’l award

Imelda O. Degay

BAGUIO CITY -- In less than two decades, the Nutritionist-Dietitians Association of the Philippines – Baguio-Benguet Chapter received its 6th Most Outstanding Chapter award at the national level. 
The award recognized effort of officers and members in enabling the organization remain true to its commitment in promoting good nutrition and healthy lifestyle through activities in 2016. 
The chapter has sustained its professional education programs, technical assistance to groups, agencies and communities and  linkages  with government and non-government organizations  in delivery of nutrition and dietetic services among others. 
The award was recently received by immediate past president, Dr. Pelin Belino accompanied by delegates from Cordillera, mostly chapter officers,  on the occasion of the 62nd national NDAP Convention at Marriot Hotel , Pasay City. 
The first national award was received in 2001 and succeeding awards were given in 2006, 2008, 2009 ending with the Hall of Fame in 2010. 
The chapter acknowledged support of officers and members, their respective employers and superiors, partner agencies like National Nutrition Council-CAR, DSWD-CAR, Benguet State University, local government units, communities and clients.
 In the same event, BSU faculty  SherilynBalauro also bagged the Nutritionist-Dietitian of the Year (2016)  award for  her efforts to advance her profession including outstanding work performance as educator, instructional manual development, extension and research involvement. She’s the 4th nutritionist-dietitian from the region  to receive an individual award from mother NDAP.
Then  DOH-CAR nutritionist , past vice president for Luzon  and chapter president Imelda Aboy was most outstanding provincial ND in 2008. 
The same award was received by Yasmin Abing of Benguet General Hospital in 2012. 
In 2011, this writer who served as past president and BOD was awarded   Outstanding ND in education and research.
For 2017 and 2018,  the NDAP-BBC looks forward to more enhanced activities while consciously striving to further develop its members. 
It will be participating in  the Duting Tan Dukto component of the Strawberry Festival.
It will continue to hold the pre-nutrition month seminar every June (June 8 for this year) and do outreach activities.

New activities include   a quarterly symposia on itopics such as art of emceeing (April 22), “nutrition in the workplace” and environment-related projects among others.   July is Nutrition Month.


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