Prisoners to provide sidebar in Baguio Day run

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Friday, July 11, 2014


WITH a little help from overseas, inmates of the city jail will join the Baguio Charter Anniversary Run, albeit they will do it around their limited courtyard.

"I read about the Fun Run last night ket, as (we did last year), we’ll handle the registration (of the prison participants)," e-mailed former world Shotokan karate champion Julian Chees from his base in southern Germany.

Chees, a native of Maligcong, Bontoc, Mt. Province, earned the distinction of being the only non-German by birth to have been drafted into the German national karate team.

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Last year, his Shoshin Kinderhilfe Foundation, which provides support to indigent patients in the Cordillera homeland, bankrolled the registration fees of 38 male inmates who lapped three kilometers inside the city jail while thousands were racing in the 18-city Philhealth Run on February 17, 2013.

"We can sponsor again some of the inmates so they, too, can contribute to raising funds for patients in our region," Chees said.

The Baguio Charter Anniversary Run has been included by mayor Mauricio Domogan as a special feature of the city’s 105th founding anniversary "to give a humanitarian dimension to the celebration".

Proceeds from the foot race set on September 28 will go to a fund to help indigent kidney patients who are undergoing thrice- or twice-a-week hemodialysis in order to survive. The same will be managed through the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center Dialysis Patients and Partners Association, in coordination with city social welfare and development officer Betty Fangasan.

The association headed by Fr. Richard Justo earlier asked the mayor to provide a humanitarian element to the city’s founding anniversary through the run-for-a-cause.

In response, the mayor signed Administrative Order 075 including the run as a public-private partnership project “to give substance to the 'Culture of Caring' that was the city’s centennial theme in 2009".

In response to the mayor’s call for community support, Shoshin said it will pay the registration fees of prisoners who will join the run.

Seasoned foot race director Rosario “Che” Velasco-Alberto also came out of a six-month hiatus and accepted to serve as the race organizer.

The race executive and working committees will be formed soon, after the mayor has received the commitment of heads of civic and community groups to help make the run a community effort.

At the induction of officers of the BGHMCDPPA on June 22, Baguio Rep. Nicasio Aliping pledged a P100,000- support which he turned over to the association officials two days later.

People and groups who would like to help run and contribute to the Baguio Charter Anniversary Run may call up the Public Information Division of the city mayor’s office, with Tel. No. 442-2502, care of this writer.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on July 12, 2014.

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