Friday Sep, 25 2020 09:44:41 PM

CSO, Youth group extend help to IP community in Maguindanao

INDIGENOUS PEOPLES NEWS • 13:30 PM Sun Feb 9, 2020
Edwin O. Fernandez

GUINDULUNGAN, Maguindanao – More than 100 Indigenous Peoples living in a remote village here have benefitted from the community outreach and food distribution program conducted by a non-government organization.

The group, led by Aileen Usob Hualde, chair of Women Organization of Rajah Mamalu Descendants (WORMD) and non-Moro IP Youth Group headed by Rojohn Ented, initiated the outreach program.

“We extended help and we immersed with them for two days,” Hualde said of the Feb. 7-8 activity in Sitio Fute, Barangay Ahan, Guindulungan, Maguindanao.

All the 130 beneficiaries were members of the Teduray community.

Hualde said the IPs received goods that included rice, canned goods, noodles, break, biscuits and dental kits. 

She said former Director Fatima Kanakan of Office of Southern Cultural Communities (OSCC) donated five sacks of rice for the relief distribution.  “I LOVE UPI” group headed by Jojo Bedar also provided some food donations.

“We also conducted feeding program and performed games to children of Maringen Elementary School in Sitio Fute,” Hualde said. “We cooked food and conducted feeding so everybody can share the food they consider as blessings.”

“It was a long and arduous journey for five hours,” she said.  “We walked through five kilometer route that included crossing three rivers and climbing route only horses can go,” Hualde added.

“Mahirap talaga (So difficult) yet its worth, nawala ang pagod namin sa smile ng mga bata at kanilang kaligahan na nakarating kami sa kanilang lugar,” Hualde said.

Timuay Noel Ented, the tribal leader in Sitio Fute, said Hualde’s group was the first to visit and extended help for them.

“We really appreciate your efforts in coming over,” Ented told the group.

Hualde said “my group’s advocacy will continue so that more Teduray communities will be served.”

“We also advocate education for IP children,” she said.

Youth leader Rojohn Ented said his group will also continue helping the children and the youth and educate them on the issue of ancestral domain, culture, arts and “our roles in the community we live in.”

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