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Press Release

Date Release:  9 February 2017

2017 Angels Walk for Persons with ASD

About 24,000 people participated in the 2017 Angels Walk in observance of the 21st National Autism Consciousness Week (NACW) conducted on 5 February 2017 at SM Mall of Asia Arena, Pasay City.  The theme for this year is “Onwards to An Autism-Ok ASEAN”.

The Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) supports the campaign believing

that a disabled child has the right to special care, education and training to help

him or her enjoy a full and decent life in dignity and achieve   the greatest

degree of self-reliance and social integration possible (source:  CRC).

Photo Caption  :from the right, DSWD                                             Photo Caption:  ASD performers                                Photo Caption:  CWC Personnel

Usec Ma. LourdesTuralde-Jarabe,

NCDA Acting Dir. Carmen Zubiaga with

the new national Trustees of the ASP

The event aimed for greater attention and assistance to the condition of Persons with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) globally which led to the participation of the ASEAN Heads of delegation namely HE DR. AKP Mochtan, Dep Sec. Gen. ASEAN; Mr. Akiie Ninomiya, Executive Director of APCD; Mr. Rizaany Irwan Muhammad Mazlan, Counsellor, Embassy of Malaysia; and, Ms. Feilina Feisol, Chairperson, National Autism Society of Malaysia.

Globally, autism is estimated to affect 21.7 million people as of 2013. As of 2010, the number of people affected is estimated at about 1–2 per 1,000 worldwide. It occurs four to five times more often in boys than girls. About 1.5% of children in the United States (one in 68) are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as of 2014, a 30% increase from one in 88 in 2012. The rate of autism among adults aged 18 years and over in the United Kingdom is 1.1%. The number of people diagnosed has been increasing dramatically since the 1980s, partly due to changes in diagnostic practice and government-subsidized financial incentives for named diagnoses (source:  Wikipedia).

In the Philippines, estimated cases of autism rose from 500,000 in 2008 to one million people at present, the number could be much higher since there are still a lot of areas in the Philippines not covered.  Health experts have attributed the increase to better detection methods, but genetics and environmental factors could also be among the causes (Source:  Philippine Star).

The above data revealed that the number of people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in the Philippines and other countries worldwide has almost doubled in the past six years and the number is still rising.

The event was attended by the Philippine delegations namely Cong. Yeddah Marie Romualdez, Legislator, Tacloban House of Rep.; Mr. Martin Romualdez among the Legislative Sponsors of R.A. 10754; Cong Emi Calixto-Rubiano, Legislator, Pasay House of Rep.; Ms. Carmen Zubiaga, Acting Exec. Dir. of NCDA; Ms. Hellen De La Vega, Asst. Sec., Office of ASEAN Affairs, DFA; DSWD Usec Ma. Lourdes Turalde-Jarabe, Office of the Undersecretary for Operations and Programs (promotive); Mr. Hans T. Sy Chairman of the Exec. Com. SM Prime Holdings, Inc.; Mr. Jeffrey C, Lim, President of SM Prime Holdings, Inc.; and Ms. Anna Maria S. Garcia, President of SM Supermalls.

Activities highlighted were the singing of the Philippine National Anthem inspired by ASP’s call for an Autism-OK Philippines, Praise Song led by Nica Escasinas, AOK-Talent Showcase, ASP Autism Angel Achievement Awards to Ms. Vell Baria, Induction of New National Trustees of the ASP, Mixed Fit Warm-UP led by Ms. Dona Lima, Opening Salvo rendered by NU Pep Squad, 4-time UAAP Cheerdance Champions, Welcome Message of Ms. Dang Koe, Chair, ASEAN Autism Network and the Autism Society Philippines and Engr. Bien Mateo, Director for the SM Cares PWD Program, Ms. Mona Magno-Veluz, National President, ASP, Angel Diva (a special performance from Ms. Regine Velasquez), and Angelic Messages from the International and Diplomatic Community, government agencies, and private sector leadership and the finale, which is the Parade Walk from the Mall of Asia Arena to the Music Hall.


Written by:  Ma. Edna L. Estal, Psy M, LP

Public Affairs and Information Office

Telephone No.: 7811039 loc. 1006


Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 February 2017 13:14
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Written by Public Affairs and Information Ofiice   

Press Release

23 November 2016

2016 National Children’s Month and

World Day Against Child Labor Celebration:

Hats off to the One Million Batang Malaya launching!


Around 700 people composed of children, national government agencies, academe, non-government organizations participated on November 8, 2016 at St. Scholastica College (SSC), Leon Guinto Street, Malate, Manila in observance of the 24th National Children’s Month (NCM) and the World Day Against Child Labor (WDACL) sa Pilipinas 2016.

The event was organized by the Department of Labor and Employment-Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns (DOLE-BWSC) in partnership with the Chairperson of NCLC Sub-Committee on Knowledge Management Mr. Julius Cainglet from Federation of Free Workers (FFW), St. Scholastica College (SSC) Manila, Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC), National Youth Commission (NYC), ERDA, and National Council on Children’s Television (NCCT).

Principal guests were DOLE Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III, Dean Ma. Asuncion Azcuna of Arts and Sciences of St. Scholastica College, and Mr. Giovanni Soledad of International Labour Organization (ILO).  Of equal importance are the video messages from Atty. Sonny Matula of FFW and Ambassador Donald Dee of ECOP.

For 2016, the focus for World Day Against Child Labour – marked on 12 June - is on child labour and supply chains.  The International Labour Organization (ILO), the United Nations body launched the World Day Against Child Labour in 2002 in order to bring attention and join efforts to fight against child labour and the Philippines joined the international observance of World Day Against Child Labor to raise awareness on the plight of child labourers and to demonstrate the country’s solidarity in the worldwide campaign against child labor.

For this year, the global theme is “End child labour in supply chains – It’s everyone’s business” with the local theme “Walang Batang Naabuso sa Paggawa ng Produkto!” to solicit commitment of governments, workers’ group and employers’ organization and enterprises in eliminating child labor in supply chains. However, for this year, the observance was conducted in November to support the 24th National Children’s Month Celebration with the theme “Isulong:  Kalidad na Edukasyon Para sa Lahat ng Bata”. The annual celebration of National Children’s Month is every November as stipulated in R.A. 10661, s. 2015 with CWC, DSWD, and NYC as the lead agencies.

Secretary Bello emphasized the importance of completing the education towards a good life.  He said that “dapat walang Bata sa paggawa ng produkto para masiguro na walang mga batang maabuso”.

The highlights of the event were Focus Group Discussion participated in by the children wherein group output was acted out and the printed statements with their photos were posted in the 1 Milyong Batang Malaya Tarpaulin as the peak of 1 M Batang Malaya launching; the Batang Malaya Quiz Bee and “Sabayang Pagbigkas Para sa Batang Malaya” contests; “Linangang Pambata” Skills Workshop at Barrion Hall wherein one of the workshops (painting) conducted was facilitated and sponsored by the CWC; and, the awarding ceremony of winners on Batang Malaya sa Lente ng Kabataan and Pelikulaya Para sa Batang Malaya; Batang Malaya Quiz Bee; and, Sabayang Pagbigkas Para sa Batang Malaya.

#              #              #

Written by:  Ma. Edna L. Estal, Psy M, LP

Information Officer III, Public Affairs and Information Office

Council for the Welfare of Children

Telephone No. 7811039 local 1005/1006


Written by Public Affairs and Information Ofiice   

Last Updated on Monday, 17 October 2016 14:17
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Press Release

Date Release:  5 September 2016

CWC appeals to the public to be vigilant on injuries amid the Pokemon GO games!

The ‘augmented reality’ Pokemon game called Pokemon Go has become popular so fast among the Filipinos, which has been officially released in just three countries (Aus, New Zealand and U.S).  It has caught a harmony with gamers and has raced its way to the top of the charts on both the iPhone OS and Android application stores.

Niantic, Inc., an American software development company based in San Francisco, California best known for developing and publishing Pokemon Go recently released that it has already found a huge following among gamers, but it can be harmful to the person playing the game unless the person is careful (source:  Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia).

In the Philippines, people whether young or adult are fond of playing Pokemon Go games as seen in news reports or even in actual day to day experience.  However, some people are getting too engrossed in the game and in turn getting injured which is partly because the game transforms the real world into a Pokemon catching arena.  People get so immersed in catching Pokemon that they ignore the risks of real world that might take place like playing Pokemon Go while driving or walking along the city’s streets.  “It has been reported that multiple people suffered minor injuries from falling while playing the game due to being distracted.  Also, reports from other countries include accidents due to inattentive driving, trespassing, and being targeted by criminals due to being unaware of one’s surroundings (Sources:  Manila Bulletin; GMA News Online).  Specially, the minor or children as patronage who were considered as the most vulnerable sector in our society because of susceptibility and helplessness in different forms of danger.

The CWC strongly appeals to parents, teachers, duty holders and stakeholders in the community to be on guard and provide guidance to the children/minors regarding the consequences of being preoccupied in playing Pokemon Go which might hamper their growth and development and cause injuries or accidents.



written by:

Ma. Edna L. Estal

Public Affairs Information Office

Council for the Welfare of Children

Telephone No. 7811039 local 1006

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Written by Edna Estal   

Press Release

April 4, 2016

End Violence against Children!

As part of the global initiatives to end Violence Against Children (VAC), a research forum entitled “Boy & Girls At Risk” in conjunction with the first ever national baseline study on the magnitude and extent of VAC in the county (Philippines) was conducted on March 31-April 1, 2016 in Manila Hotel.  The Council for the Welfare of Children organized the activity in collaboration with UNICEF Manila, Consuelo Zobel Alger Foundation, University of the Philippines-National Institutes of Health/Institute of Health Policy and Development Studies and Child Protection Network.

One hundred eighty (180) people participated in the forum from different fields of profession composed of national government agencies, non-government organizations, and academe together with DSWD Hon. Sec. Corazon Juliano- Soliman, Executive Director Patricia B. Luna and Deputy Executive Director Atty. Marijoy Segui, UNICEF Country Representative Lotta Sylwander, Mr. Stephen Blight of UNICEF-EAPRO.

DSWD Secretary Dinky Soliman said that the NBS-VAC provides an opportunity to have a better grasp of the situation of children vulnerable to abuse and ensures that the response provided to them is appropriate and timely.  She quoted that there is an African adage that goes, “It takes a village to raise a child.” With this launch, we are reaffirming that sense of community. We are one village raising our children in a society that values them, cares for them, and loves them – because a community that values and cares for its children instills confidence and caring in them that will enable them to participate in the same community and help shape its values towards building a better and stronger nation.

The highlight of the forum is the presentation of the preliminary result of the Philippine VAC Study with emphasis on Boys and Girls at Risk by UP-Manila Prof. Laurie Ramiro, which aimed to obtain a national estimate of the prevalence of various forms of VAC in the country and to gather information on the status of child protection in local government units in terms of resources and prevention readiness. The study covered a total of 172 barangays nationwide, with a final sample size of 4,283 sample size consisting of 13 – 24 years old respondents. The overall study design for quantitative research is prevalence study and for qualitative research is the community stakeholder’s study and the methodology used is the concurrent mixed design.  The data collection for the study was completed in August 2015 and preliminary results/findings were shared during the Ako para sa Bata, The International Conference last December 1-2, 2015 in Cebu City.

Relevant presentations by experts ensued during the first day.  Among the topics discussed were as follows: Philippine Systematic Literature Review on VAC by Dr. Bernadette Madrid; Corporal Punishment by Prof. Lianne Alampay; Trust, Power, and Violence by Dr. Elizabeth de Castro; Culture and Violence by Dr. Michael Tan; Masculinity:  What do Filipino boys learn? by Mr. Jay Yacat; and, The Role of Gender in Violence by Prof. Carol Sobritchea.

For the second day, presentations discussed were equally interesting and important namely:  VAC and the exploitation and Abuse of Children Online by Ms. Marie-Laure Lemineur; VAC and Child Online Protection by Ms. Sarah Norton-Staal; Engaging community in child sexual abuse prevention online and offline by Afrooz Kaviani  Johnson; Building Capacity/Skills for Prevention and Response by Ms. Stephanie McCourt; Legislation and Policy Opportunities within VAC Interventions to Prevent VAC using Advocacy and Policy by Ms. Wilma Banaga; Philippine Age of Sexual Consent/Statutory Rape by Dean Sedfrey Candelaria; Understanding Filipino Family Norms by Prof. Belen Medina; Migration Orphans by Dr. Norietta Balderrama; Parenting Filipno Children Under Stress by Dr. Lourdes Carandang; Interventions to Prevent Violence Strategies to Prevent Child Maltreatment by Dr. Susan Mercado; Family Development Session and Child Protection by Dir. Leonardo C. Reynoso; Poverty, Social Protection and Equity by UP Vice Chancellor Nymia Simbulan.

To conclude the two-day research forum, CWC Executive Director Luna captured the attention of the participants by providing the challenges, recommendations and next steps to take from this forum.  The preliminary result of the VAC study is just the beginning of more tedious works ahead of us.  Our participation in the forthcoming International and Local activities such as: Knowledge Exchange on Effective Strategies for Violence Prevention in Kuala Lumpur in November 2016; Asia VAC Meeting in Beijing on  26-27 April 2016; National Children’s Conference, Summit; National & Regional dissemination of the NBS-VAC result; Conduct workshops fora to review and respond to results VAC through development of multi-sectoral response plan and the launch of the NBS-VAC on October 7, 2016 are all geared towards making our country VAC free.


“We need to act, STOP Violence Against Children NOW!”

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