Zonta Cebu 2 members celebrate womanhood

EMPOWERING WOMEN. Members of Zonta Club of Cebu II join the Vagina Monologues cast in performing One Billion Rising Campaign’s official song “Break the Chain.” (Contributed Photo)
EMPOWERING WOMEN. Members of Zonta Club of Cebu II join the Vagina Monologues cast in performing One Billion Rising Campaign’s official song “Break the Chain.” (Contributed Photo)

THE Zonta Club of Cebu 2, led by its president Marilou Cañizares, celebrated Women's Month last March with activities highlighting some of the club’s advocacies.

The organization is based in Cebu City and it is part of Zonta International, which was founded in Buffalo, New York in 1919. Zonta International is a global organization of executives and professionals working together to advance the status of women worldwide through service and advocacy.

Role models

During its March general membership meeting, Zonta Club of Cebu 2 honored three Women of Inspiration awardees—Rosie Abenasa, Maria Rosario Canet Chua and Joy Lam—for their acts of extraordinary courage, innovative work and commitment to community service.

Women empowerment

At the finale of the play “Vagina Monologues,” which was presented at Seda Hotel in Cebu City, Zonta Club of Cebu 2 joined the cast and crew in performing One Billion Rising Campaign's song “Break the Chain,” which was choreographed by Debbie Allen, as part of the One Billion Rising Campaign's aim to end violence against women. The "billion" refers to the United Nations statistic that one in three women will be raped or beaten in her lifetime, or about one billion, according to Wikipedia. Zonta Club of Cebu 2 is in solidarity with the global community in its campaign to end abuse of women.

In partnership with Fight Like a Girl PH, Zonta Club of Cebu 2 launched the "Raise The Vibration–Rise for Revolution" at Ayala Malls Central Bloc in Cebu City. The event aimed to raise awareness on abuses towards women through art. During the event, 180 victims of violence and human trafficking under the protection of the Bidlisiw Foundation were present and around 500 mall goers witnessed it.

Highlights of the event were the poetry reading conducted by members of The Women’s Prayer and I Got Flowers Today, the interpretative dance performed by Zontian Mary Rose Villacastin and culminating event, the with One Billion Rising Campaign's “Break the Chain” performance with audience participation. Yellow roses then were distributed to the audience as a sign of Zonta’s commitment to end violence against women and girls.

Gender equity

During the Mandaue City Hall's flag raising ceremony, Zonta Club of Cebu 2 members joined the workforce of the City Hall and its women’s group that promotes equality among men and women in the community. The activity was attended by 3,000 City Hall workers and public servants, including Mayor Jonas Cortes, Vice Mayor Glenn Bercede and the councilors.

Teenage pregnancy

In partnership with the University of Southern Philippines Foundation and the school's Golden Z Club, Zonta Club of Cebu 2 invited Dr. Hans Matthew Lua of Cebu Velez General Hospital (CVGH)-Department of Family and Community Medicine to talk about the adverse effects of teenage pregnancy.

Lua presented an actual case of a 15-year-old pregnant girl that jump-started the discussion on the medical and psychosocial issues of teenage pregnancy in general. A learning point from the presentation was the intervention module created by the CVGH entitled “Crescenza,” which gave importance to values formation.

The program ended with a speech by Zontian Petite Garcia about the significance of the Billion Rising Campaign. Zontians performed on stage the Break the Chain, eliciting rousing applause from the students.


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