NINE Baguio Centenarians will be presented and honored during the grand opening day of the 2017 Octoberfest Celebration billed at the Baguio Convention Center on October 3.
The monthlong celebration is a joint project of the Baguio Elderly Assembly (BEA), the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) and the Office for Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA), initiated by BEA in 2003. The originals who are still with the BEA are the BARP Foundation, Federation of Baguio Senior Citizens Associations (FBASECA), Philippine Government Retirees Association, Baguio Chapter (PGREA); the Veterans Federation of the Philippines, Baguio District (VFP and the United States Armed Forces of the Philippines, Northern Luzon (USAFIPNL), specifically composed of World War II Veterans from the fighting men and women of the 66th Infantry Battalion, AFP. BEA, with the blessings of the Almighty, BEA remains ever faithful and loyal to it mission pursuant to a Presidential Proclamation and a City Council Resolution making the month of October every year, a distinguished period to recognize and honor the Filipino Senior Citizens. The BEA’s “Covenant of Unity” which brought about the annual Octoberfest celebration in the City of the Pines is certainly a joyous fraternal offering, filled to the bream with various activities spread throughout the month. Happily, the CSWDO and the OSCA are adviser-consultants to the BEA, with yours truly as the president.
Our Oct. 3 program at the BCC will be graced by party list Representative Milagros Magsaysay of the Coalition of Senior Citizens. She will be introduced by Betty Fangasan, CSWDO Department Head and incumbent president of the Social Workers Executives of the Philippines. Centerstage activities start with an invocation by Rev. Fr. Benedict Castaneda of the Baguio Cathedral. Elderly Scouter Hedeliza Pulanco from FBASECA will lead in the singing of the Pambansang Awit while Basi-lisa Piemental, the Baguio Hymn. City Councilor Lilia Farinas, chairperson of the committee on social services, women and urban poor of the Sangguniang Panglunsod ng Baguio will deliver the opening remarks. On the lane to give their respective inspirational greetings are Congressman Marques Go, City Mayor Mauricio Domogan and Vice Mayor Edison Bilog. An intermission number from FBASECA follows.
After the elderly presentation, the Department of Social Welfare and Development-CAR regional director will present the city’s Centennarian honorees for this year, who will receive their individual allowances from the national government. After the honor rites, Fangasan will introduce the occasion’s principal guest of honor. Certainly, we are excited, anticipating and extremely interested to know from the VIP from Congress about the latest developments concerning senior citizens rights and benefits, as individuals or as a group. A token of appreciation for her leadership and attendance and participation in our Octoberfest celebration will be presented to Congresswoman Magsaysay by the Special Event Committee. Finally, Isaias Barongan, OSCA Head will give the closing remarks. Yours truly will serve as the master of ceremonies during the program.
To completed the day’s program, a street parade by the elderlies from the Baguio Convention Center grounds down Session Road to end at the Melvin Jones Grandstand along Harrison Road. BEA’s Green is Life beautification and backyard nature conservation project once again comes to the fore with the distribution of fruit bearing fruit trees to designated group of paraders.
Up to this writing, our Senior Citizens Officials for a Day (SCOFAD) is still being classified and being sorted out. The would - be SCOFAD officials who will take over the reign of leadership of our local city government and a number of LGU department offices in the CAR will be known shortly. We have today and tomorrow to finalize the leadership Roll of Honor. By Monday, Sept. 25, the committee will announce the SCOFAD assignments for the benefit of the over 60 applicants, coming from BEA member associations. The SCOFAD program will be held at the City Hall and a number of LGU CAR Offices on Oct. 2, next month, to usher in the 2017 OCTOBERBEST Celebration.
We just got a word Wednesday afternoon that in the Elderly Summit, organized the City Council through the Committee of Social Services, Women and Urban Poor has been pospond to a later date. It was scheduled for September 21, this month staring at 1 pm at the City Hall Multi- Purpose Hall. The historic date marked the Declaration of Martial Law in the Philippines by the late President Ferdinand E. Marcos in 1972. Through the years, pro and anti sentiments have been expressed by Filipinos all over the country and overseas. We are still divided on the Marcos Martial Law issue. One way or the other, all of us Filipinos must find ways and means to reconcile as a people and as a nation. We must work together for everlasting peace, understanding, toward progress and prosperity. We must work together hand in hand to give our future generation a better life and a better Philippines.
God save our magandang Pilipinas!