THE chancellor of the University of the Philippines in Mindanao, together with different department heads, visited the indigenous people housed at the Haran evacuation center on Wednesday to see how the academic community can help the evacuees and make a study on how to solve the problems they are facing there.

UP Mindanao Chancellor Sylvia Concepcion, in an interview with Sun.Star Davao, said those from the academe must be aware of the situations faced by the lumads so that they may be able to teach the students, who are going to be the next leaders of the country, on how to deal with this kind of situation.

“Hindi naman tayo pwedeng tumingin nalang,” Concepcion said, adding the first step to the solution is awareness.

The different department heads who visited Haran specialized in different fields such as anthropology, social science, food science, biology, management, architecture, arts and sciences, among others, who will meet to discuss how they can improve the shelter that will benefit the evacuees after their visit there.

“It has been 10 months since they come here and the academic community wants to see how we can help the IPs in Haran,” Concepcion said.

She said that it was her first time entering the shelter. She later explained in the interview that UP can help recommend better solutions to the existing problem in Haran.

Concepcion clarified though that she is not saying that the government is not doing something on the issue because she does not know what the government has done so far to solve the problem, but she said that “because the problem continues, then maybe, it is not properly directed.”

The Haran bakwits are going to turn one year at the Haran shelter this May.

It was previously reported that UP-System students also visited and slept with lumads at Haran for one night and they were followed by another set of guests from the Integrated Bar of the Philippines including their president, Rosario Sietas Reyes, last December 29. (RCP)