(PAGASA 24-HOUR PUBLIC WEATHER FORECAST as of Saturday, 27 November 2021) Shear Line affecting the eastern sections of Northern and Central Luzon. Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) affecting Palawan and Zamboanga Peninsula. Easterlies / Localized Thunderstorm affecting the rest of Mindanao. Caraga Region will have Partly cloudy to cloudy skies with isolated rainshowers due to Easterlies / Localized Thunderstorm. Possible flash floods or landslides during severe thunderstorms. Light to Moderate winds coming from East to Northeast will prevail with Slight to Moderate coastal waters / (0.6 to 2.1 meters). /span>



Tuesday, November 2, 2021

DSWD-13 preps for 2021 Children's Month celebration

 

BUTUAN CITY -- Addressing the effects of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on children is the focus of this year's National Children's Month (NCM) celebration.

For this, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)-Caraga has prepared activities anchored on survival, development, protection, and participation of children amid an ongoing pandemic, encapsulated in the theme, "New Normal na Walang Iwanan: Karapatan ng Bawat Bata Ating Tutukan." 

"The NCM is important because it advocates for the rights of our children and instill in the Filipino consciousness the responsibility everyone holds in protecting the children," said DSWD-Caraga - Protective Services Division (PSD) chief Jessie Catherine Aranas on Monday, October 25, during her guesting at the Kapihan with PIA at SM City Butuan.

By virtue of Republic Act 10661, the National Children’s Month (NCM) in the Philippines commemorates the adoption of the UN CRC on 20 November 1989, and is annually celebrated every November. This year marks the 29th

national celebration of children's month. 

This year's celebration, in particular, is most imperative as they intend to shed light on the effects the pandemic has had on children as well as the increasing cases of child abuse and exploitation amid a pandemic, Aranas said. 

Webinars and contests will be launched by the agency for the month-long celebration which will kick-off on November 4, 2021.  

Survival of children will be the focus of the first week of the celebration. Gift-giving to children housed in the child care centers will be conducted as well as adopt-a-community activities with disabled children and indigenous children. 

The theme for the following week will center on children's development, where a series of webinars will be conducted in partnership with the DepEd-Caraga. 

A festival of talents will be the highlight of the third week where various contests such as spoken word poetry, advocacy video making, and many more will be hosted. 

In the celebration's final week, the DSWD-Caraga will conduct a series of webinars to educate children, especially those housed in child care centers, about their protective rights and the services of the government for the welfare of children.

The celebration is set to culminate on November 29, 2021. 

Rising OSEC cases 

Meanwhile, the PSD chief has disclosed that cases of online sexual exploitation of children (OSEC) have increased during the COVID-19 pandemic. At least 20 cases have already been reported to the agency alone and some more reported to the local social welfare and development offices that they are yet to gather. But definitely, cases have gone up now compared to the cases tallied pre-pandemic. 

A contributor to these cases is perpetrators and predators having more means to exploit children through the internet. 

"We know that our children are now more exposed to the internet and sometimes, because of their tender age, they are more vulnerable to certain types of websites which perpetrators use to lure children."

Nevertheless, she said that response from the government has been swift due to their active and cooperative partner agencies and local government units that make up the Regional Children's Welfare Committee (RCWC) and other similar committees chaired by the DSWD-Caraga.

"While we acknowledge that there is still more to be done, we are thankful for our partners especially the LGUs which are our firsthand responders in the community, for their active participation to end sexual abuse and exploitation of children," Aranas said. 

Aranas also urged the public to be involved in addressing child abuse in their community. 

To report cases of abuse and exploitation on children, contact the Regional Committee for the Welfare of Children (RCWC) through https://www.facebook.com/RCWCCaraga or approach the nearest social welfare and development or police station near you. (DMNR/PIA-Caraga)