USAID Philippines Mission Director Ryan Washburn (third from right) joins partners from the Department of Education and the Department of Health, led by DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones and DOH Secretary Francisco Duque III, for the launch of the BIDA Kid campaign to support the safe resumption of face-to-face classes.

The Department of Education (DepEd), the Department of Health (DOH) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) formally launched Tuesday the national BIDA Kid COVID-19 prevention campaign to support the safe expansion of face-to-face classes nationwide.

DepEd, DOH, and USAID kicked off the BIDA Kid national campaign at the SM Mall of Asia Music Hall to encourage learners, teachers, and education stakeholders to keep practicing COVID-19 health and safety guidelines in schools and public spaces.

“One of our utmost priorities is the safety of our learners amid the risk of COVID-19. The BIDA Kid campaign is another whole-of-government initiative to encourage everyone to keep our children protected while we progressively reintroduce classroom-based learning,” said Education Secretary Leonor Magtolis Briones.

Health Secretary Francisco Duque III and USAID Philippines Mission Director Ryan Washburn joined Secretary Briones to unveil the official music video and key visual of the campaign, which highlights the 3Bs: Bakuna (Vaccination), Bayanihan (Solidarity), and BIDA behaviors—Best friend natin ang masks, Ingatan at hugasan ang kamay, Dumistansya upang makaiwas sa sakit, Airflow ay panatilihin (Wear masks, observe handwashing and social distancing to avoid getting sick, and maintain room airflow).

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Secretary Duque reminded education stakeholders to continue observing safety measures in schools and at home despite the improving COVID-19 situation in the country.

“A safe school environment is crucial for our children’s development both academically and emotionally. This is only possible if we continue to champion COVID-19 vaccination in our communities and commit to practicing the minimum public health standards everywhere and at all times,” Secretary Duque said.

Mission Director Washburn said he was grateful for the strong partnership between USAID and the national government as a whole-of-society approach ensures that physical classes can be conducted safely.

“Face-to-face classes give students better motivation to study, having the opportunity to interact directly with their teachers and classmates. Classrooms offer a supportive environment for learning as well as social and emotional well-being,” said Mission Director Washburn. “As your friend, partner, and ally, the U.S. government, through USAID, will continue to collaborate with our Philippine government counterparts so Filipinos are better able to manage the impacts and bounce back quickly from the COVID-19 pandemic.”

As of March 28, around 13,692 public and private schools are conducting in-person classes, according to the latest DepEd field report. Thanks to the country’s Resbakuna Kids campaign, about 10 million children have been vaccinated against COVID-19, and the DOH continues to secure additional vaccine doses for them.

The BIDA Kid campaign, including BIDA kits, the music video, jingle, and key visual, will be rolled out to all schools and DepEd offices. Field offices are encouraged to display and develop localized materials to further amplify the campaign’s messages.

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