To strengthen its advocacy in promoting older person’s rights and welfare, the Municipal Government of Dalaguete (MGD) thru the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office (MSWDO) and Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) celebrated the annual Elderly Filipino Week in honour of all the registered Senior Citizens in the Municipality with this year’s theme, “Kilalanin at Parangalan: Tagasulong ng Karapatan ng Nakakatanda Tungo sa Lipunang Mapagkalinga.”

The theme is a take-off from the 2018 theme of the United Nations International Day for Older Persons (UNIDOP) which is a tribute to individuals, groups, and older people around the world who dedicate their lives to championing older persons’ rights.

More than 1,400 registered Senior Citizens from 17 Barangays (Coastal and Midland) and more than 1,100 registered Senior Citizens from 16 Barangays (Upland) participated the activities which were held in two different dates and venues; Dalaguete Sports Complex (October 25, 2018) and Mantalongon Covered Court (October 29, 2018). MSWDO and OSCA lined-up a series of talks and activities during the celebration. A Holy Mass was held as part of the spiritual practices most of the elders do.

Inspirational Talks and Messages

Invited guests and personalities within the Municipality graced the events and gave their messages to our Senior Citizens. Mr. Simeon Barrit Sr., President of the Federation of Senior Citizens Associations, emphasized the important role of the Senior Citizens in the society. He encouraged that all the older persons must take advantage of the privileges and benefits installed for the i.e. Philhealth Insurance. Hon. Hilarion Belciña, Jr., SB Member also empowered our Senior Citizens to push the formulation and implementation of bills and laws to protect and promote their rights.

Hon. Ronald Allan G. Cesante, CPA, Municipal Mayor, inspired and insured the Senior Citizens that they are taken care of by the MGD and that will continue to sustain them with their needs as much as they could. He emphasized that they have a place in his heart and he recognized and acknowledged their efforts as part of the continuous development of the Municipality. His way to craft initiatives for the total welfare of the senior citizens will take time but eventually will be realized with the help of other local agencies that promote such shared advocacies.

Hon. Edsel A. Galeos, Board Member of the 2nd District of the Province of Cebu, also graced the activity with an inspirational message to our senior citizens. He lifted the spirits of our participants as he will be soon a member of the sector. He also believed in the works of our Municipal Mayor in taking good care and developing all the Dalaguetnons, especially the Senior Citizens.

Mr. Juanito D. Ybañez, the Head of the Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs, introduced Ms. Lyra Villaruel, LLB, Administrtive Staff of the Office of the Municipal Mayor, whom was the guest speaker for this Elderly Filipino Week celebration. She talked about the major and minor privileges of all the registered senior citizens; from medical-related, discounts to domestic transportation, hotels, restaurants and funeral services. She also shared her understanding about life and gave insights to the participants. Ms. Villaruel pointed out about the privileges of a Filipino if he/she reaches 100 years old – from national to local incentives. Those ways our senior citizens will have an outlook to in reaching that stage, as well as, encourage them to continue living a healthy lifestyle.

Hon. Jose Mari “Tata” Salvador, Board Member of the 2nd District of the Province of Cebu, whom is the Chairman for Senior Citizen Affairs under the Provincial Board, didn’t want to miss the celebration especially in his hometown. As part of his Health Advocacies and being a registered nurse, he pointed out common health issues that are breaking-out in our province today. He reminds them of the ways on how to prevent these outbreaks and promotes total health wellness to all the senior citizens. Nevertheless, as he is still the Chairman of the Board for Senior Citizens Affairs in the Second District of Cebu Province, he will continue to support all the projects, programs and activities for our elderly people.

Hon. William O. Lagahid, SB Member and Chairman on Social Welfare and Development, also gave his message. As the Chairman on Social Welfare and Development in the Municipality, he is making sure that all, if possible, senior citizens in the Municipality shall register and enjoy the benefits and privileges for them. He also is promoting the implementation of laws to protect them in any way. Hon. Lagahid is overwhelmed that most of the senior citizens were able to attend the celebration that served as their avenue to express their emotions and show to them that they are a part of a big developing organization.

Lola Serafina Velarde Orozco at 100 years!

As part of the guidelines of the Department of Social Welfare and Development, one of the two Dalagueton Centenarians was recognized during the upland event.

Lola Serafina Velarde Orozco, 100 years old, from Barangay Mantalongon, Dalaguete, Cebu was hailed to have reached this age. She received a Letter of Felicitation and Plaque of Recognition from the President of the Philippines himself, Pres. Rodrigo Roa Duterte and of course an incentive grant of Php 100,000.00 as stipulated under the Republic Act 10868 or the “Centenarians Act of 2016”.

She then will soon as well receive another cash grants from the Provincial Social Welfare and Development Office worth Php 50,000.00 and from the Local Government Unit of Dalaguete worth Php 50,000.00.

With this, our Centenarians will go a long way in helping them maintain their health and well-being.

Search for Wonder Lola 2018

The first ever search for Wonder Lola 2018 was one of the highlights of the celebration. This was participated by confidently beautiful and talented Lola’s who represented their Barangay Senior Citizens Associations. This part of the activity was to promote camaraderie, self-esteem and rejuvenating their potentials as elders.

The pageant was opened by a production number with their own introductions and sayings about life. They also showcased various talents from singing, dancing (ballroom) to spoken poetry.

Lola Leoncia Catulpos of Barangay Obong (Coastal & Midland) and Lola Rosenda Ybañez of Barangay Dumalan (Upland) were hailed as the first ever Wonder Lolas 2018! Nevertheless, all the candidates received awards and cash prizes as a thanksgiving in joining the pageant.

Mapasalamaton

Various presentations from different Senior Citizens Associations were showcased by our ever active Lolo’s and Lola’s. These showed that they are still inclined with physical activities which boost their self-confidence and self-esteem despite the growing age that limits their social interaction.

All Senior Citizens who attended the Elderly Filipino Week 2018 celebration received cash allowance from the Municipal Government of Dalaguete thru the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office.

This served as their transportation and meal allowance, as well as, thanksgiving for gracing the event with their presence and participation.

According to the Punong Barangay of Brgy. Mantalongon, Hon. Josephine Nepomuceno, “Mapasalamaton kaayo ko sa mga nagdumala ug nagpaluyo niining kalihukan sa atong mga Senior Citizens ilabina sa atong pinalanggang Mayor Ronald Allan G. Cesante ug mga officiales sa lungsod, sa atong MSWDO Ma’am Evelyn Sarmago, sa atong Office of the Senior Citizens Affairs Head Mr. Juanito Ybañez, ni Board Members Tata Salvador ug Edsel Galeos, nga nalingaw ug nalipay gyud sila. Ug nakadala ug kadasig nila ang pagkakita nila sa atong Centenarian nga maoy naka hatag nila ug kusog nga mulahutay pa niining kalibutana.”

This activity will be celebrated annually which most of our Senior Citizens look forward to. “Kini naghatag ug kaligdong sa atong mga edaran nga mga kaigsuonan ug hinaot pa unta nga makaapil gyud tanan nga mga senior citizens ilabina diri sa kabukiran nga dapit.” said Lolo Alberto Anore, 66 years old, of Barangay Tabon, Dalaguete, Cebu.

With the continuous and joint efforts of the agencies involved in these activities, surely the senior citizens of the Municipality of Dalaguete are taken care of. The Municipal Government of Dalaguete will continue to craft projects, programs and activities for the welfare and development of our senior citizens.