MARAWI CITY, Lanao del Sur (PIA)--The Community and Family Services International (CFSI) through its Marawi COVID Recovery Project (MCRP) has noted a soaring number of residents in this city who enjoyed their psychosocial assistance, exceeding the number of target beneficiaries after more than a year of operation.
Amal Edres, the CFSI psychosocial support officer, said as of February 23, 2023, 2,818 people, or 104% of the goal of 2,711, had received psychosocial support from her group.
She said that 329 of their recipients, or 47%, had a chronic illness or other medical condition, and 170, or 24%, had a condition related to getting older. About 81, or 12%, were persons with mental, neurological, and substance use disorders (MNSD); 67, or 10%, were persons with disabilities (PWDs); 47, or 7%, were children with developmental delays or disorders; and one person was a gender-based violence (GBV) survivor.
Edres also shared that 272 individuals have benefited from medical assistance such as medical check-ups and the provision of other needed medications, and 21 children with global developmental delays, down syndrome, autism spectrum disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and intellectual disability have availed themselves of their offered occupational therapy, which aimed to improve behaviors like the ability to pay attention or have focus, identify colors, walk, and learn basic life skills.
She said that the rural health units in the areas her group worked in were grateful for the help her group gave because the health of their clients did improve. She also said that the caregivers were able to understand how important it was for their clients to take their medicines regularly in order to keep getting better.
Also, the CFSI gave out 333 assistive devices, such as nebulizers, adult and child wheelchairs, pointed and quad canes, commode chairs, crutches, standard walkers, strollers, guiding sticks, learning toys, prosthetic legs, and colostomy bags, to help people with chronic illnesses feel better and keep their health from getting worse.
A total of 564 people were also referred to the right government agencies so they could get medical and financial help, a PWD identification card, a stipend, and other tools to help them get by and get better on a psychological and social level.
Furthermore, Edres stated that they have conducted psychoeducation sessions to assist in managing the effects of illness attacks and other complications, as well as trained 264 people on community-based psychosocial support and referral mechanisms to improve a community support group's knowledge and skills on appropriate community interventions.
She added that also among the efforts successfully implemented under her control were kambisita, or visiting the covered neighborhoods to express concern and care to persons with special needs; monitoring of signs of psychosocial distress, validation of reports of neglect, violence, harassment, abuses, and exploitation; responding to the said cases; referring to the authorities' gathered cases of psychosocial abuse for adequate support; contributing to partners’ programs intended for PWDs and MHPSS; and field placements through the help of social work students from the Mindanao State University.
Edres said that all of these things show that her organization has been working hard to help not only people in need, but also their caregivers and parents.
"Mas mai-improve pa sila kung tayo na mga parent at caregiver ay may motivation na aalagan sila. Hindi nga lang parehas sa normal [na mga tao] but at least, may life skills na sila na pwede nilang gawin at maging independent sila na kahit wala na tayo sa mundo ay kaya na nila. Iyan naman ang pinaka-aim natin," she said.
(They improve more if we, as parents and caregivers, have the motivation to take care of them. It may not be like those normal [people] but at least, they will have the life skills that they can use to be independent so that even if we are not already in this world, they can survive. That is really our aim). (CRG/PIA-10/Lanao del Sur)