PCOO-attached office leads 6th Bandana Galing sa Puso Festival

MANILA -- The News and Information Bureau (NIB), an attached office under the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO), in cooperation with the Philippine Cancer Society Inc. (PCSI), led on Thursday the conduct of the "Bandana Galing Puso Festival 2018" at the Department of Geriatric and General health Services of the Jose R. Reyes Memorial Medical Center inside the MalacaAang Compound in Manila.

Now on its 6th installment, the annual cancer awareness program serves as the culminating activity of the observance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October.

It was highlighted with the distribution of bandanas for more than 100 cancer patients enrolled at PCSI's Patient Navigation Access Program, aside from a raffle of products and entertainment presentation by several sponsors who shared their pooled resources as a way to ease the stress being felt by cancer patients.

Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) Commissioner Greco Belgica, who served as the guest speaker of the event, encouraged cancer patients not give in to despair and even serve as inspiration to others.

Cancer, we know now, is curable. May plano ang Diyos sa lahat ng buhay natin. Kahit tayo may sakit kaya tayong pagalingin (God has plans for us all. Even if we are sick, we can be cured), he said.

Ang kailangan lang, palakasin natin ang ating pananampataya sa Diyos, maging masaya kayo para di kayo mapadali. Dahil pag kayo ay gumaling, marami kayong mai-inspire (All we have to do is strengthen our faith in God and be happy to prevent an untimely death. Because if you get cured, you will inspire many others), Belgica said.

The PACC commissioner urged the patients to excel in their God-given skills and show to other people that even if they are cancer-stricken, they can still help despite needing help themselves

So maging ispirasyon tayo sa iba sa pamamgitan ng pagbibigay ng tulong sa nangangailangan, sa pagpe-perform pa rin ng ating mga skills, para makita ng mga tao na sila (cancer patients) nga may sakit nagagawa nila yan di ako din (So, let us serve as an inspiration by performing our skills to help others in need, so that people would see that if the cancer patients could do it, so could they), Belgica said.

Belgica also committed himself to facilitate their request for President Rodrigo Duterte to build a geriatric and cancer hospital in the same site.

Ang aking lang maipapangako ay mailapit ang inyong concern sa Pangulo, dahil malapit sa puso ng pangulo sa ganitong issues�mga bata may sakit, mga matanda may cancer (I promise to raise your concerns to the President, because issues like these are close to his heart), he said.

Palagay ko naman po ay hindi ipagkakait ng Presidente ang bagay na yan. Tingin ko pag nalaman nya yan, agad niyang ipapagawa (I believe that the President would not refuse your request. I think that once he learns of your request, he would immediately have it built), Belgica said.

Meanwhile, the holding of this year's event at a geriatric center was not a random choice because it marked the first time that the elderly were included in the program.

The inclusion of the elderly was an initiative of NIB Director Virginia Arcilla-Agtay, who said the elderly has a special place in her heart.

She shared that she took care of her mother in her old age, during the time she became bed-ridden, until the time of her death.

Kaya po ang sakripisyo ko po ay para sa nakakatanda, may pinagkukunan po ako pag nakikita ko kayo (That is why I make sacrifices for the elderly, because I find inner strength whenever I see you), she said.

So, this is an early Christmas. Ito lang po ang aming humble na maibibigay para sa inyo. Kahit konting sandali, kahit ilang oras na mga serbisyo na maibibigay, sana po makasaya sa inyo (This is our humble contribution. We hope that the few hours of services that we offer would give you happiness), Agtay said.

Besides the NIB and the PCSI, among those that gave support to the activity included the Rotary Club of Manila � J.P. Laurel Chapter; Natural Health Fopundationof the Phiklippines, Health Code International, NGCH Seniors Wellness; Little President's Learning Palace, Filipino Women Inventors and Innovators Inc.; MalacaAang Employees Cooperative; and Radio TV MalacaAang, among others. (PNA)

Source: Philippine News Agency