MEMBERS of Panay Adoptive Parents Association (PAPA) are urging other couples to adopt children.
“We want more children. There is sheer joy in a big family. That is why we adopted a child. When our second son arrived in our home, our first born became more responsible,” said Mark and Reinalyn Cabag.
Mark is president of PAPA while his wife Reinalyn is one of the officers. Cabag issued this statement when the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Field Office VI established an Adoption Help Desk at SM City Iloilo recently.
The Adoption Consciousness Week is being observed Every month of February. This year’s theme is “Pagmamahal Palaganapin, Legal na Pag-aampon Ating Gawin.”
Cabag said that Ilonggos—especially those childless couples, those who want to have additional kids, or even singles but must have father or mother figure—should think of adopting children because they deserve to have permanent homes.
“We want to have a society free of abandoned children,” said Cabag.
Cabag added that what melted their heart when they did adopt a child was the gradual disappearance of classic symptoms of an abandoned child.
“Before, we did not even see him cry. And then we scheduled his feeding time. Then we realized that loving a child could melt the hardest of hearts,” he said.
Rod, another adoptive parent and a physician, said, “Try legal adoption. It will change your heart, it will soften your heart. You are going to have a heart of a giver.”
In the same manner, Mafloradel Cabucos, one of PAPA’s officers, told about the joy of legal adoption, “Deep in our hearts, you are the greatest gift given by God to us. You are longed for and we want to give your our unconditional love.”
Adoption is defined as a socio-legal process of providing a permanent family to a child whose parents have voluntarily or involuntarily relinquished parental authority over the child.
“We still have children in child-caring institutions and those in foster homes who need permanent families,” said Rosario Sanagustin.
HOW TO APPLY
Sanagustin said that those who want to apply could go to the nearest Local Social Welfare and Development Office (LSWDO).
“Even singles could apply as long as there is a mother or father figure in their household,” she said.
The DSWD6 is also conducting a quarterly Adoption and Foster Care Forum wherein the process of adoption is being explained.
Sanagustin also warned young individuals who are into unwanted pregnancies.
“It is better to give up the child to us at DSWD rather than leaving babies somewhere else. We ensure that we put them in permanent homes,” she said. (DSWD-6/May Rago-Castillo)