VIRAC, Catanduanes (PIA)- Catanduanes State University (CatSU) through its the Gender and Development Services conducted various activities in connection with the nationwide 18-day Campaign on Violence Against Women from November 25 to December 12, 2022 with the theme: “United for a VAW-FREE Philippines.”
On December 5, a conference dubbed as “Bridging the Silence on Gender Violence” was held at CatSU Accreditation Room in cooperation with the Local Government Units (LGUs) of of San Andres and Baras headed by Mayor Leo Mendoza and Mayor Paolo III Teves, respectively.
The conference aimed to provide the participants deeper understanding and knowledge of the current state of gender violence in the province. Notable individuals and leaders representing the different sectors and offices with direct hand on women, family and children ably presented their ideas on the services, data, plans, and challenges they encountered as gender advocates of the province.
Present during the event were DTI Provincial Director Maria Belma Escueta, PNP-Virac PSMS Josephine Bergonio, Atty. Rene John Velasco, EBMC WCD Officer Dr. Cecile A. Zuniega, Pastor Richard Manlangit Pacora of the Light and Salt of the Earth Christian Church, Sr. Basilides “Daisy” Superable of the Contemplative of the Good Shepherd Convent, and the Emergency Department Head of EBMC Dr. Arman Jefferson Espinola.
Other participants represented various offices and agencies including Cavinitan Elementary School, Calatagan Elementary School, Calatagan High School, Panganiban MSWDO, Calatagan Brgy. Local Govt. Unit, Camp Camacho Provincial PNP, Eastern Bicol Medical Center (EBMC) Hospital, and Public Attorney’s Office.
Other activities include a Eucharistic Celebration, VAW-free community advocacy parade, various contests participated in by bona fide students from the Main and Panganiban Campuses, such as the 20-year Philippine VAW-Gains Quiz bee, painting contest, Bicol Song Writing contest, VAW-Free Photography Contest, Slogan and Poser-Making Contest, and a seminar training focusing on Bridging the Silence on Gender and Violence.
Prof. Reashiela L. Khan, Gender Mainstreaming and Monitoring System Focal person (GMMS), led the opening remarks for the culminating activity held on Dec. 12 and thanked everyone who supported the learning and development sessions. Winners of the various contests were also awarded during the program.
Prof. Khan also encouraged everyone to continuously support CatSU GAD activities and, in their own little way, be an advocate of anti-violence against women and children.
The Magna Carta of Women (Republic Act No. 9710) defines the Gender and Development Program (GAD) as the development perspective and process that is participatory and empowering, equitable, sustainable, free from violence, respectful of human rights, supportive of self-determination, and actualization of human potentials. (EAB-PIA5/Catanduanes)