Mayor Lucilo Bayron speaks in front of the PWDs during the opening of the disability week. (Photo from Puerto Princesa City Information Office)

The opening of the 45th National Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation Week, known as PNDR 2023, commenced in Puerto Princesa yesterday with a parade led by members of the persons with disability (PWD) community.

The event, held at Balayong People’s Park on July 17, marked the beginning of a week-long celebration dedicated to promoting inclusivity and rehabilitation for individuals with disabilities.

The parade showcased the participation of every barangay, as they displayed their banners. PWD members defied their physical challenges, demonstrating their spirit. The theme for this year’s celebration, “Persons With Disabilities Accessibility and Rights: Towards a Sustainable Future Where No One Is Left Behind,” highlighted the significance of equal opportunities and rights for all.

During the program, PDAO Program Manager Genaro Manaay underscored the importance of this year’s theme, emphasizing the role of families and communities in supporting PWDs.

Councilors Patrick Alex Hagedorn and Judith Raine Bayron delivered messages promoting inclusivity and fair treatment for every person.

Mayor Lucilo Bayron brought good news to the PWD community. He revealed that starting next year, the quarterly allowance for them would increase, evoking applause and appreciation from the attendees.

He acknowledged the dedication and efforts of Bayron, Hagedorn, Jonjie Rodriguez, and other council members in ensuring the additional financial support through the Mapagkalingang Program.

“Masaya akong i-balita sa inyo na sa pagsusumikap ni Konsehala Raine, kasama si Patrick, at Jonjie, at iba pang mga konsehal ay siguradong maisasakatuparan natin iyong dagdag na P1,000 para sa allowance,” he said.

In addition to the festivities, the city administration distributed wheelchairs to deserving beneficiaries, enhancing mobility and independence.

Collaborating organizations such as the City Health Office (CHO), City Social Welfare and Development (CSWD), City Civil Registrar’s Office, Philhealth, Palawan Special Consumers Cooperative (PSCC), and Mister Donut extended their support to the program, providing services including medical check-ups, consultations, document processing, on-site registration, and more.

The celebration featured several activities to promote physical well-being and camaraderie. PWDs joined zumba sessions and showcased their sporting prowess in the PWD Special Fun Games. Moreover, a range of activities were scheduled throughout the week, including informative sessions such as the IEC Orientation on Republic Act 8972 & RA 9262, Emergency Disaster and Preparedness Orientation, Basic and Intermediate Sign Language workshops, and more.

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