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Australian Ambassador visits PWCares+ SaKaDab porgram

AUSTRALIAN Ambassador H.E. Steven Robinson AO visited PWCares+, a beneficiary of the Australia Awards Alumni Engagement Program – Grant Scheme for Covid-19 Response on March 15, 2022. He was received by Prof. Vicente Antonio V. Pijano, III, PWC Chancellor and COO who thanked him for sharing his country’s invaluable resources to the school and community during the pandemic.

The Australian Embassy’s COVID-19 Response Advocacy and Fair-Trade Livelihood Enterprise Support Program, in collaboration with PWCares+ trained PWDs from the Samahan ng may iba’t-ibang Kakayahan sa Dabaw or SaKaDab in the manufacture of personal protective equipment (PPE),  and Fair-Trade Principles.  SaKaDab has since made and sold PPEs to various entities. The Department of Trade and Industry Region XI and a local cooperative have provided them with a shared service facility to further enhance their garment production enterprise.

Prof. Pijano told the Ambassador that the COVID-19 Response Advocacy and Fair-Trade Livelihood Enterprise Support Program has benefited 17 PWD members of SaKaDab. They were trained from April 26 to 30, and assessed by PWC on May 6 and, were further certified in the application of the Fair-Trade Principles in their production of PPE personal protective equipment, specifically masks and cover-all suits.

SaKaDab has since made and sold 1,000 PPEs to various entities. The Department of Trade and Industry XI and a local cooperative have provided them with a shared service facility to further enhance their garment production enterprise. According to Prof. Pijano, “PWC is looking forward to digital training and capacity-building as the beneficiaries expand their production skills.”

Ambassador Robinson was teary-eyed when the beneficiaries sang “Impossible Dream” and found it hard to start delivering his message after the song. In his message, he congratulated the SaKaDab on its accomplishment. He appreciated how the group made use of limited resources and worked together to continue being productive during the most challenging time.

The PPE Fair Trade Production and Livelihood Training Project of PWC of Davao was made possible by PWC’s Tambayayong Hubs Network partnership with the Australia Awards Alumni Engagement Program – Grant Scheme for Covid-19 Response under Christina B. Ramos, World Fair Trade Organization Asia President and CEO Mitos Urgel, DACUN Internationalization and Linkages Committee (ILC) head Dr. Erwin Faller, the San Pedro College Community Extension Office, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Davao City, TESDA XI, and the Davao Real Estate Board. The project opened doors for a shared service facility grant to SaKaDab from DTI and a growing enterprise managed by the beneficiaries.

SaKaDab is a group of 27 PWDs who have chosen to highlight their abilities and different acquired skills. They came together at Our Lady of Victory Training Center for Handicapped Youth, working toward a common goal of increasing their quality of life and becoming self-reliant. Their skills include but are not limited to baking, handicrafts, sewing, woodcraft, and welding.

On July 15, 2010, SaKaDab members envisioned having their own homes and means of livelihood. With their determination and skills, they sought help from generous hearts. On November 14, 2011, Mayor Inday Sara Duterte, City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) and the City Government of Davao, Mr. Oscar Hilado, Gawad Kalinga, and the Lions Club came together to make their dream a reality. A piece of land located in Los Amigos, Tugbok, Davao City, was awarded by the City Government to SaKaDab, now called SaKaDab-GK Village, where 1,500 Gawad Kalinga volunteers built the houses for seven days. The first group of members moved to the village on August 19, 2013, and the rest were relocated towards the end of the month. By November 13, the Livelihood and Training Center located in Los Amigos, Tugbok District, Davao City was turned over to them.

Words of gratitude are extended to SaKaDab President Ludivico Gecain Mascariñas Jr. and its members for inspiring PWC! #PWCares #InnovationIsOurTradition (Emi-Alexander Englis,Maria Christina B. Ramos,Tisay R.Torres)

 

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