CICL Symposia & Sagu-Ilaw Launching
By: Minnie Louise G. Taduyo
Last October 16, 2019, the Magone Home Aftercare Program, spearheaded by the program director Bro. Louie Domasian, SDB, organized a CICL Symposia and Launching of the CICL guidebook: Sagu-Ilaw. The event was held at the Fr. Jose Bosch Hall, PPC Building of the Archdiocesan Shrine of Our Lady of Lourdes, Punta Princesa, Cebu City. It was attended by several stakeholders who are involved in handling children in conflict with the law (CICL). Among them are individuals from the Cebu City Operation Second Chance, the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the PNP Women and Children Protection Desk (WCPD) Officers of the cities of Cebu and Mandaue, City Social Welfare and Development Officers of the cities of Lapu-Lapu, Cebu, Mandaue and Naga, Regional Trial Court (RTC) – Office of the Clerk of Court, RTC Br 70 Lapu-Lapu, Provincial Social Welfare and Development office, Children’s Legal Bureau, Home Care Center, ESPIF, and graduate students from prestigious universities in Cebu. The launching of the CICL guidebook was preceded by an introduction of the Magone Home Aftercare Program (MHAP), which was delivered by Bro. Louie himself, this is part of the program’s consistent advocacy works on children in conflict with the law (CICL). The presentation covered the different services under MHAP as well as its success stories. Proceeding this is the highlight of the event – the launching of the Sagu-Ilaw: A guidebook for the Children in Conflict with Law headed by the Presiding Judge of Malaybalay City, Hon. Ma. Theresa Camannong.
Judge Ma. Theresa presented the guidebook as a pioneer project here in the Philippines which could help inform the CICL population of their rights as well as their responsibilities. According to her, it is necessary for the CICL to understand their rights as well as the proceedings upon which they are subjected. Moreover, she urged the social workers to assist the CICL in understanding this through the guidebook. The guidebook is an illustrated informative material and written in the bisaya language. According to Judge Theresa, the simplicity of the manual encourages understanding among the CICL. Sagu-Ilaw is a Talaandig term; Talaandig is one of the 7 IP Tribes of Bukidnon, it means “seeking enlightenment” which conveys the disposition of the CICL as they undergo the healing process of reintegration. Apart from the launching, Judge Theresa also provided a concise lecture on the PNP manual on handling CICL. It helped the participants understand better the process of the PNP in rescuing the minors. The lecture was enriched with questions and realities on the ground that were raised by the participants. Because of it certain issues and concerns were raised during the discussion and suggestions for possible solutions was made both by the lecturer and the participants themselves.
The last topic was presented by the Magone Home Team Coordinator Mr. Abelardo Banuag, RPm entitled Psychological Dynamics of the CICL. He presented the statistics, data of the cases handled by Magone Home Aftercare Program and the factors that pushed them to become a CICL. With it, he showed to the participants that change among the CICL is possible and how a CICL aftercare program like that of Magone has helped in addressing recidivism among CICLs. Proceeding this is an open forum where a healthy discussion on areas of concern and improvement are thrown by different sectors while Judge Theresa listened and offered her suggestion as well. Among those who offered their insights regarding the event is a representative of MHAP Batch 12 clients who delivered a speech of gratitude for everyone who were present and for those who helped them in their road to redemption.
Indeed, it was a leap of faith to organize such an event. It was a success not just for the Magone Home Team but to all the CICL stakeholders and partner organizations who participated in this affair. It was a testament that there are people like Judge Theresa Camannong and the rest of the participants who continually deliver a labor of compassion and selflessness for the children in conflict with the law.