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UPVTC OCEP & ADMU team up for Katatagan ng Kabataan

The UP Visayas Tacloban College Office of Continuing Education and Pahinungod (UPVTC OCEP) in partnership with Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU) Department of Psychology,  implemented the resilience program for adolescent disaster survivors dubbed as Katatagan ng Kabataan on July 17 and 18, 2015 at UPVTC, Tacloban City. 

 Thirty-seven adolescent residents of Abucay Bunkhouse, a temporary resettlement area for survivors of super typhoon Yolanda in Tacloban City, participated in the program. The one-and-a-half-day event was facilitated by senior psychology students of ADMU, assisted by volunteer-observers from the UPVTC Psych Circle.  The facilitators and volunteers were supervised by Prof. Pierce Docena, UPVTC OCEP Coordinator; Dr. Ma. Regina Hechanova, ADMU Psychology Department Chair; and Avy Acosta, a graduate student of ADMU. 

The participants learned various skills aimed at helping them recover from the stresses of disasters and preparing them to better cope with future disasters.  They shared their experiences and performed age-appropriate activities as they went through six modules that taught them how to find and cultivate their strengths, manage their physical reactions to stress, reframe their negative thoughts and emotions, seek solutions and support, engage in positive activities, and plan for their future. 

In the afternoon of July 18, the volunteer team visited Abucay Bunkhouse to interact with the families residing in the temporary resettlement area.  The team also distributed more than 100 school backpacks to selected children and portable water filtration system called SolarBags to the 200 families in Abucay Bunkhouse.  The backpacks were donated by Mr. Ramon Puno, the father of one of the ADMU student-facilitators, while the SolarBags were donated by the Manila Water Foundation through the efforts of Mr. Puno. 

After offering Katatagan for two batches of adult survivors at the Abucay Bunkhouse, the UPVTC OCEP and ADMU, plans to offer the same program to one more batch.  A second round of Katatagan ng Kabataan will also be held in the last week of August 2015, which will be facilitated by UPVTC psychology students.

By: Pierce S. Docena

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