MANILA, April 10 -- A deaf-mute college graduate from Tacloban City has proven that disability is not a hindrance in providing public service.

Ma. Merliza Montibon, a deaf-mute college graduate of Hotel and Restaurant Services at AMA Computer Learning Center is now part of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Regional Office No. 8 family after being qualified as one of the beneficiaries of the DOLE’s Government Internship Program (GIP) for 2017.

After the series of evaluation of her employment documents and interviews, DOLE Northern Leyte Field Office has decided to provide her a three months internship opportunity to demonstrate her talents and skills in the field of public service.

“I am very happy to experience working in the government, particularly in DOLE, and I can’t thank you enough for giving me this opportunity of a lifetime,” Montibon said through sign language.

She also shared her story of dreams and determination as a passionate public servant, who is always willing to help people in need.

Being the eldest in the brood of four, Montibon helps her mother in taking care of her younger siblings after her father left them 10 years ago. She had to endure hard labor, working at early age just to help her family cope with daily living.

After self-supporting her studies, she was able to finish her course and applied for GIP slot with the DOLE RO 8 and was luckily accepted and immediately started her internship with the department.

The government internship program is a component of the government’s Kabataan 2000 project under Executive Order No. 139 Series of 1993, which aimed to provide opportunities for young workers who wanted to serve the public through the projects and services of government agencies and offices at both local and national level. (DOLE)