Mahintana Foundation Inc., through the GCERF – funded Promoting Peace Engagements and Community Empowerment (ProPEACE) Programme supported the local government unit (LGU) of Polomolok in celebration of the Linggo ng Kabataan (Week of the Youth) in Lumakil, Polomolok last August 24-26, 2021. Dole Philippines, Inc. (Dolefil) and the 10th Special Forces Company of the 5th Special Forces Battalion (Philippine Army) extended their support to the event, which was launched in the presence of local authorities, mayors, and councilors.
During the launching, Hon. Efren Cordon Lumakil Punong Barangay, welcomed stakeholders and beneficiaries, with reminders on observing health protocols. Hon. Honey Lumayag-Matti, municipal mayor of Polomolok, expressed the commitment of the local government to restore the barangay through social services support. With the recent security concerns, Mayor Matti encouraged the constituents assuring that the local government and its stakeholders’ support are in place: “Ibalik natin ang dating sigla ng Lumakil.” (Let us collectively regain Lumakil.) Ms. Daren Talahuron, Lumakil Sangguniang Kabataan chairperson, expressed her gratitude for the support as this year’s Linggo ng Kabataan is themed Transforming Food System: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Sustainability. They showcased local delicacies to promote acceptance of diversity in Lumakil while also empowering youth as leaders in their communities.
Mahintana Foundation, Inc. turned over a wheelchair to a Lumakil beneficiary at the program, represented by his parent, who expressed gratitude to the foundation and its partners for realizing her wish for her son’s mobility. Mr. Martiniano Magdolot, President, and Ms. Liza Hora, Executive Director, demonstrated the customized wheelchair and mentioned the ongoing wheelchair caravan in South Cotabato. The caravan will benefit 200 persons with disabilities. Mr. Roel Ian Blanker, ProPEACE Programme Manager, concluded the program by sharing the ProPEACE programme, emphasizing the need for collaboration with and among the community and to assist them in addressing peace and development concerns resulting in the multi-stakeholder support for Lumakil.
After, the local government unit organized a medical-dental mission and outreach program in Purok Maguindanao, Brgy. Lumakil. Around 79 children were enrolled in the LGU’s feeding program. Meanwhile, Mahintana and the Municipal Health Office team educated the youth and children about appropriate sanitation and hygiene at the barangay-covered court. Following the orientation, the team distributed a total of 100 hygiene packs to the participants. Continuing the activity, youth session named Healthy Young Ones composed a series of anti-smoking, anti-drug abuse, and adolescent reproductive health campaigns for 100 adolescents was conducted. The activity was facilitated with the assistance of the Polomolok Task Force Kalusugan (PTFK), a task force established by the LGU through a public-private partnership with Dole Philippines, Mahintana as secretariat, and the Municipal Cooperative Development Council. The task force assists the municipality in addressing emerging health concerns.
On August 25-26, the 10th Special Forces Company, led by Capt. Harold Layan provided tuli (circumcision operation) and haircut services together with the Lumakil Barangay Health Center. 85 children benefitted from the Operation Tuli. Parents of the children also received Vitamin C supplements through Mahintana’s Lakbay Buhay Kalusugan Program, a health promotion caravan conducted through Health Plus Project, a social enterprise pharmacy that provides safe and affordable medicines and supplies where the hygiene kits, as well as the medicines and supplies needed for Operation Tuli were obtained.
The community responded with the activity, indicating that it helped restore the locality’s sense of community. Lumakil is one of the areas in Polomolok affected by security concerns.
The support extended during the Linggo ng Kabataan celebration resulted from community consultation visits conducted in July with Mahintana, the local government unit, and security forces through the ProPEACE Programme.
With the assistance and commitment of stakeholders, the adopted community will continue to benefit from the recovery efforts on a regular basis.
Other notable guests were Governor Reynaldo Tamayo Jr. of South Cotabato and Hon. Eamon Gabriel Matti, South Cotabato,1st District Board Member.
The SK continues the week-long celebration with tree-growing activities as a commitment of the youths to the environment.