» Beautiful Girl Inside Out: Personality Development for Alternative Learning System Learners
28.03.2018 - UNESCO Office in Jakarta

Beautiful Girl Inside Out: Personality Development for Alternative Learning System Learners

©UNESCO Office, Jakarta

Within the framework of the project “Better Life for Out-of-School Girls to Fight Against Poverty and Injustice in the Philippines” an initiative dubbed as “Beautiful Girl Inside Out: Personality Development for Alternative Learning System Learners” was organised on 24 March 2018 at NEAP Conference Hall, DepED Regional Office VIII-Eastern Visayas, Government Centre, Candahug, Palo, Leyte. A total of one hundred twenty-seven (127) Alternative Learning System (ALS) girl-learners participated in the event together with nine (9) ALS learning facilitators and five (5) key officials of Department of Education (DepED).

This initiative was organized to: provide participants with fundamental information and knowledge on personal grooming and hygiene, set-up a platform to motivate girls to pursue and complete their studies in Alternative Learning System (ALS), offer an opportunity for girl-learners to interact with and learn from notable and accomplished women from various fields and celebrate the National Women’s Month as set in the month of March by the Government of the Republic of the Philippines.

Addressing the opening session, Dr. Mee Young Choi, Head of the Education Unit of UNESCO Office, Jakarta, stressed that the organisation under the leadership of Dr. Shahbaz Khan, is very keen in supporting efforts to promote gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls. She also highlighted that events like this are necessary for confidence-building among girls and for them to become stronger, more resilient, and more productive members of the society. Mr. Mark Chester Tamayo, Chief of Curriculum Implementation Division, DepED Division of Tacloban City shared the message of Dr. Thelma Quitalig, the Schools Division Superintendent. He conveyed the appreciation of DepED Division of Tacloban City as partner in an initiative that supports and empowers women and girls. Mr. Alfredo Cafe, Education Program Supervisor for Alternative Learning System, DepED Regional Office VIII-Eastern Visayas represented Dr. Ramir Uytico, Regional Director. He stressed that DepED Regional Office VIII fully supports the initiatives as it will bring about the better learning outcomes particularly for girls attending the Alternative Learning System.

The morning session was on “Nurturing the Inner Beauty: Inspirational and Motivational Talk.” The guest speakers who talked to inspire and motivate the ALS girl-learners includes Atty. Irene Mae Alcobilla who placed 1st in the 2014 Philippine Bar Examinations, making her the “First Bedan Woman Bar Topnotcher,” and “First Antiquena Bar Topnotcher,” Dr. Mee Young Choi who was an awardee of the first Rosalind Driver Studentship to be given to an Asian student from King’s College London in the United Kingdom and Dr. Marivic Bumalay who placed 7th in the 2016 Philippines Physician’s Licensure Examination and at the same time a Registered Midwife and Registered Nurse, respectively.

The afternoon session was on “Fundamental and Essential Personal Grooming and Hygiene for Girls.” The guest speakers who talked on this topic includes Mrs. Camelia Nemil, Division School Nurse from DepED Division of Northern Samar, Dr. Marivic Bumalay, Dermatology Resident from Jose R. Reyes Memorial Medical Centre and Ms. Faye Jessa Egargo, Psychology Faculty of Leyte Normal University. These three women talked about feminine hygiene, skin care, stress coping and management and girl-specific health issues among others. All girl-participants received health and hygiene kit which includes sanitary napkin, tooth brush, tooth paste, bath soap, hair brush, isopropyl alcohol and shampoo among others.

Taking it from the words of Morynne Keith Verona, Alternative Learning System Learner from DepED Division of Tacloban City, she noted the words of Atty. Irene Mae Alcobilla that “Life is a matter of choice not of survival and in spite of her loss she learned to stand up and go on. She also added that women have voices to excel and have power to succeed.” She was touched by the words of Dr. Mee Young Choi, “Don’t be disappointed of yourself because every life is history, it is different and it is unique, you don’t have to be someone’s else to succeed, you have to be the best version of yourself.” She highlighted the words of Dr. Marivic Bumalay that “Yourself now is your best version, don’t change it but improve it. She also expressed thanks for the tips on how to be successful, to be confident on your own skin, to not to be afraid of failures, to love what you do, to do what you love and specially to pray and trust God.” Finally, she expressed her profound appreciation to UNESCO, KOICA and DepED for having such event for ALS girl-learners in which they learned so much lessons.

This initiative was moderated by Ms. Maria Bea Karisma Agarao, who graduated Cum Laude with the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Communication Arts from University of the Philippines Los Banos and Master of Science in Development and Aid Management from University of Birmingham, United Kingdom.

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