Volunteers honored at 8th Bayani Ka! Awards

The recognition of outstanding community volunteers at the 8th Bayani Ka! Awards by KALAHI-CIDSS, held on July 5 at Grand Xing Hotel in Iloilo City.

By Mariela Angella Oladive

Volunteers from marginalized sectors were honored on July 5 at the 8th Bayani Ka! Awards by the Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan – Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services (KALAHI-CIDSS) under the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Regional Office 6.

Judith Barredo, OIC Division Chief of the Promotive Services Division, said this annual recognition aims to acknowledge the dedication and efforts of volunteers and partner local government units (LGUs) in implementing community projects.

“This event is very significant for the DSWD, particularly for the KALAHI-CIDSS program, as it acknowledges our partners and volunteers for their crucial role in implementing projects within their communities. We especially honor our community volunteers who, despite receiving no compensation, ensure the successful implementation of projects. We greatly value their contributions,” Barredo said in an interview.

This year, nine individuals and groups from various marginalized sectors, including the elderly, persons with disabilities (PWDs), women, and indigenous people, were awarded.

The winners are as follows:

  • Exceptional Youth Volunteer Category: Majestry Lebrija, Barangay Arante, Sara, Iloilo
  • Exceptional Person with Disability Volunteer Category: Bengie Osman, Balasan, Iloilo
  • Exceptional Senior Citizen Volunteer Category: Johnny C. Arellado, Sara, Iloilo
  • Gender and Development Category: Rebecca Bendon, Hinobaan, Negros Occidental
  • Indigenous Peoples’ Welfare Category: Renato Casinao, Datagan Calinog, Iloilo
  • Operation and Maintenance Group Category: Gama Grande Community Associations, Gama Grande, Calinog, Iloilo
  • Disaster Risk Reduction or Environmental Category: Rey Pedroso, Palanguia, Pototan, Iloilo
  • Volunteerism Category: Daisy Albao, Brgy. Agdaliran, San Dionisio, Iloilo
  • Improve Local Governance Category: BLGU Panuran, Lambunao, Iloilo

Nominees underwent a panel deliberation where they shared their experiences and knowledge in implementing community projects. The winners will represent Western Visayas at the National Awards to be held in August.

Engr. Silverio Von Maguad III, Deputy Regional Program Manager, highlighted the ongoing success of KALAHI-CIDSS and its future direction.

“KALAHI-CIDSS has been very successful and continues to thrive. By next year, we will proceed to the next modality, ‘Panahon ng Pagkilos’ (Time for Action),” aimed at strengthening local capacities for participatory climate resilience planning and implementation, he said.

The new modality, funded by a USD 700 million loan from the World Bank and implemented in collaboration with the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and the Climate Change Commission, is set to commence in 2025.

Maguad emphasized the pivotal role of community volunteers in empowering local communities.

“We honor our community volunteers who have made a significant contribution to community empowerment,” he added.

The Bayani Ka! Awards program aims to recognize the contributions of volunteers in alleviating poverty and improving the quality of life in communities across Western Visayas.

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