To reach out and serve the senior citizens in the upland villages of Catmon town, Gov. Hilario P. Davide III and Vice Gov. Agnes A. Magpale braved a tortuous roads just to lead the Capitol-initiated “Halad sa Gugma Alang kang Lolo ug Lola” program last Oct. 18.
After combing the mountains, Davide and Magpale led another Halad in the lowlands of Catmon.
A total 3,433 senior citizens were served, who brought home food packs that contained three kilos of rice, a box of powdered milk, five packs of instant noodles, three canned goods, and a small blue “Kalambuan sa Matag Sugbuanon” pouch with bottles of alcohol and liniment on it.
Their first stop was in Barangay Agsuwao located about 19 kilometers from the town proper, wherein at least 432 senior citizens from Barangays Amancion, Anapog, Bongyas, Tabili and Cambangkaya turned up for the outreach program.
“Nalipay jud ta. Naay haplas, naay bugas, o, dia pay sud-an,” said 75-year-old Mercedez Sususco.
And they were very grateful.
“Pwerteng lipaya jud oi, nga gipanghatagan mi nila ni Gov. Davide ug Vice Gov. Magpale,” said Charito Duran, 65.
From Agsuwao, Davide and Magpale’s convoy descended to the lowland and went up again a 12-kilometer trek of winding road to reach Barangay Tinabyonan.
A total of 351 senior citizens from the said barangay and the neighboring Barangays Ginabucan, Bactas received the Halad packs.
From there, Davide’s group headed to Barangay Catmondaan to distribute Halad packs to 1,092 senior citizens not only those from the said barangay, but in Barangays Basak, Binongkalan, Cabungaan and Panalapdan as well.
The last venue of Halad was in Pedro Monsanto Sports and Cultural Center located in the town proper where senior citizens from Barangays Can-ibuang, Corazon, Duyan, Flores, Macaas and San Jose gathered to receive their food packs.
Everybody were delighted when the governor assured that “Wala’y mouli nga 60 anyos pataas nga way dala (No 60 years old and above will go home empty-handed).”
Magpale said that the Halad sa Gugma Alang Kang Lolo ug Lola has been going on since 2014.
The vice governor said that she and Davide have been regularly visiting barangays, specifically in the mountains, so that senior citizens would no longer have to go to the town proper to receive their Halad packs.
Taking care of the elderly is part of the Davide-Magpale administration’s priorities. It falls under health and social services of the administration’s Six-Key Development Agenda.
The other five development agenda are countryside development; education and technical vocational training; environment, climate change and disaster management; infrastructure, tourism and investment promotion; and law and order.