DIPOLOG CITY, March 12, 2024 – ChildFund marked the official launch of the Education for Protection and Well-being (EPW) program yesterday, March 11, taking a significant stride towards ensuring the safety and well-being of Dipolognon youth.

Organized by the ChildFund Philippines Foundation, Inc., in collaboration with key partners including DepEd Dipolog, BLGU Olingan, and the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) of LGU Dipolog, the initiative aims to fortify family and school environments in supporting children and youth amidst daily challenges.

The EPW program’s primary objectives are twofold: to foster stronger caregiver-child relationships and to promote the adoption of positive discipline practices within households.

During the launching held at the Isias Function Hall in Top Plaza, Dr. Ma. Liza R. Tabilon, Schools Division Superintendent of Dipolog City, expressed gratitude for the collaborative efforts of participating institutions committed to safeguarding children’s rights.

“Institutions that lead in the protection of our children in the community are crucial,” Dr. Tabilon stated. “We are grateful for this partnership and look forward to the positive impact it will have on our learners, particularly in the pilot implantation at Sta. Cruz Elementary School.”

Hon. Marilou Y. Calibo, representing the LGU, underscored the collective responsibility shared by parents, schools, communities, and government agencies in ensuring child protection, addressing prevalent issues such as gang activities within the community.

“The protection of our children is a shared responsibility,” Hon. Calibo affirmed. “Partnering with ChildFund and DepEd is part of addressing such problems. After all, the protection of children is a shared responsibility. Parents, schools, communities, and the government should collaborate altogether.”

CID Chief Amelinda D. Montero underscored the crucial role of EPW program modules, notably the Miles de Manos, which translates to “A Thousand Hands,” in fostering safe environments conducive to children’s development, both at home and in educational settings.

“The modules contain mechanisms that help in making safe environments for children, both in homes and in schools,” Chief Montero highlighted. “These are crucial in our efforts to protect and nurture our children.”

PSDS Rossalyn Montealto further elaborated on the comprehensive approach taken by the program, emphasizing its bridge component in facilitating holistic child protection measures.

The launch of the EPW program signifies a concerted effort by ChildFund and its partners to prioritize the safety and welfare of its youngest citizens, setting a promising precedent for future initiatives aimed at fostering a secure and nurturing environment for all children.

(via Rossalyn Z. Montealto, Public Schools Division Supervisor of CID – SDO Dipolog)