Photo from PIO

The Palawan provincial government initiated a two-day free seminar aimed at professionals and parents of persons with disabilities (PWDs) that opened Saturday, June 3.

The event, known as the 4th Baragatan sa Palawan Free Seminar for Professionals, Parents and Guardians of PWDs, took place at the VJR Hall in the provincial capitol building as part of the Baragatan Festival 2023 and in commemoration of the 121st anniversary of the establishment of the Civil Government of Palawan.

Ceasar Sammy A. Magbanua, Chief of Staff of Office of the Governor and Baragatan Executive Committee Chairman, emphasized the provincial government’s commitment to inclusivity and relevance to all sectors of society. He highlighted the focus on Palaweños with special needs, which sets the Baragatan Festival apart from other festivals in the country.

“Ever since we started organizing the Baragatan Festival in 2014, we, the executive committee of the Baragatan Festival have always made sure that our festival is not just a celebration of rich culture and traditions here in Palawan, or an exposition of our products and skills, and a platform for our Palaweño performers to showcase their world class talents, rather we make it a priority to also include activities for the least advantaged sectors of our society – those deprived of their liberty, our orphan children, our senior citizens, our indigenous peoples, and of course our fellow Palaweños with special needs,” he explained

“This I think is what distinguishes Baragatan Festival from all the other established festivals in the country because here in Baragatan, we aim to make this festival all-inclusive and relevant to all sectors of our society,” he added.

The seminar featured notable speakers, including Provincial Health Officer Dr. Faye Erika Labrador, Board Member and Committee on Health and Social Services Chairperson Marivic Roxas, and Palawan Special Consumer’s Cooperative President Angie Mendoza. The attendees comprised parents, teachers, and healthcare workers from Puerto Princesa City and various municipalities in the province.

Throughout the day, participants engaged in informative discussions led by experts from Chatter Therapy Center, alongside other professionals in the field. Topics covered included Disability Across Lifespan, Overview of Developmental Disabilities, Facilitating Speech and Language Development at Home through Play, and Understanding and Addressing Behavioral Issues in Children with Special Needs. The sessions were followed by an interactive question and answer segment.

The seminar also provided an opportunity for Chatter Therapy Center Managing Director Joane Rabang-Mata, RSLP, to reflect on the center’s advocacy and mission to extend free assistance to the Palawan community.

In conjunction with the seminar, a free clinic was opened today at the VJR Hall in the provincial capitol building, where Palaweños with special needs could receive necessary medical care and assistance. The clinic will continue its operations until tomorrow, June 4.

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