Vicente: In the midst of unsung heroes-A A +A
Thursday, February 28, 2013
AS OF this writing I am in Luna, Apayao for the 2013 Cordillera Administrative Re-gion meet and can’t help but come out with this article, seeing the life of the athletes as they brace themselves for their respective competitions. I can’t help but think of their future.
Maybe some of them would make it to the national team and carry the colors of our beloved country in international competitions while some will retire seeing sports only as a stepping stone to finish their studies.
A question that comes to mind, especially when I see our athletes hard at training, is, “Are their sacrifices and hard work worth it? Do they have a choice?” They run under the scorching heat of the sun, sleep in classrooms, lose weight to make their weight divisions just to score a win.
Sure they make history by breaking record, they get recognized but then what? Do records compensate for the time and hard days of training? Sure, they are SOMETIMES given incentives but the real question is what happens to them when they retire or for some athletes who have to extend their studies just to be used by their schools for competitions, do they have retirement plans? Are they covered by insurance?
These questions are already redundant but I just can’t help repeating them - questions that I know don’t have concrete answers. It is just a pitiful sight these very young boys and girls doing so much for the love of the sports and the institution they represent but are without certainty when it comes to their future.
We call them “heroes” but are they given their due? What I am pointing at is not to make them rich but to give them something to live by that they deserve after serving and sacrificing for the institution, be it the national team or even just varsities schools.
These young warriors are willing and able to represent and forgo their leisure time for the benefit of others but they must not only be remembered when they are out of the limelight. Let’s make sure that they have a fair life after their prime. Heroes must be remembered in their prime but also be remembered and taken cared of after they retire.
Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on March 01, 2013.