By: Pilar S. Mabaquiao
SAN JOSE, Antique – Grade 8 student Deryk Belonio of Barasanan National High School in Tobias Fornier, this year’s Pantawid Pamilya Exemplary Child in the province, aspires to become a teacher.
“Sisikapin kong maging isang mabuting mag-aaral, may tiyaga at determinasyon na makatapos sa kolehiyo at maging isang mahusay na guro,” Belonio wrote when he answered the essay “Ano ang kaya mong gawin para maabot ang tagumpay.”
He also thanked the government for the family’s membership to PhilHealth and cash grants for their education and health needs making them (with his other siblings) perform better in school and in the community.
With the support of his mother and stepfather (his father died when he was in Grade 5), he hoped to achieve his dreams and give back to the community the service that will help emancipate them from poverty and ignorance.
Belonio bested other 11 candidates who qualified for the second round of the search. The others winners were 1st runner-up Kim RG Lunasco of Inabasan, San Jose; 2nd runner-up Reds dela Serna Mabuyong, Anini-y; and 3rd runner-up Airiel M. Tangile of Guinbanggaan, Laua-an, Antique
Since DSWD launched the Search for Pantawid Pamilya Exemplary Child in 2012, Antique has sent a number of regional winners in the national competition.
The voices of these children echoed the aspirations not only of their families but other kids in depressed communities that poverty could not hinder them in achieving what they aim for.
Their stories were featured in DSWD’s Tingog Version 2.0, a compendium of inspiring stories of Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program and other convergence projects in Region 6.
Undersecretary for Disaster Management Hope Hervilla during the program conveyed assured that DSWD is all the way supporting the endeavors of parents and children to alleviate poverty through the education.
She emphasized to parents that children should be their inspiration to utilize their cash grants efficiently for their education and health needs.
DSWD-6 Assistant Regional Director for Administration Evangeline Felicio, Vice Governor Edgar Denosta, Mayor Elmer Untaran and other local officials likewise expressed support to the celebration of talents and achievements of Pantawid Exemplary kids during the program at Robinsons Mall San Jose.
Belonio will compete with other exemplary kids from other provinces in Region 6. The regional winner will also compete in the national search. (PIA-Antique)