Women in Biliran attend 15th provincial women's congress
by Flor Jackson
Naval, Biliran (March 12) -- Some 2,130 women from the 132 barangays and sitios in the entire province of Biliran attended and actively participated in the activities of the two-day 15th Provincial Women's Congress which started on March 10 at the Provincial Capitol Grounds in Barangay Calumpang, Naval.
According to Ms. Flordeliza Trani, Provincial Social Welfare and Development Officer (PSWDO), the activity aimed to highten the women-participants' awareness on gender equality, empowerment of women, and other important republic acts affecting the rights of women.
She added that the women's congress also aimed to promote the use of Gender and Development (GAD) budget to finance gender equality and women's empowerment programs especially at the local level.
Furthermore, she said that the two-day activity will help mothers and parent substitutes understand and assume major roles in child-rearing, growth and development of the child; strengthen knowledge on parenting, home management to include time and financial management.
The opening day of the activity was started with a thanksgiving mass with Msgr. Filomeno Bactol, Bishop of Naval as the main celebrant.
In his homily, Msgr. Bactol hailed the mothers for their very important role in the family, saying that if mothers are not around, oftentimes the home will not be in order.
"Women are treasures of the country. Although men and women are created equal but they have different roles – it's the woman who fills the population of society and they have important roles of taking good care and guiding children so that they can acquire good values in life", he said.
"The church is not against limiting the number of children. It recognizes control, but control through the natural means", he said further.
For her part, Dr. Cecil Espina, first lady of the province and president of the Biliran Provincial Council for Women's Welfare, Incorporated (PCWWI) who delivered the welcome address during the opening program said that women have great roles in the home, nation and the world.
She urged every participant of the congress to listen attentively to the lectures on the various skills training that will be given to them so that when they go home to their respective homes, they can apply the skills learned to increase the family income.
The skills given to the participants included hair dressing specifically on hair cut, hair spa and hair coloring; flower arrangement and skirting; chalk making; suman making and rubber slippers making.
Avon Fashions conducted a make-up demonstration using the participants as models.
Gov. Rogelio Espina who also delivered his message urged the women- participants to spend their budget for GAD in activities involving women in their respective municipalities and barangays.
"Women are key engines for growth not only in our province but for the entrie country", he said.
"Life is so lonely without the wife which is considered the "ilaw ng tahanan" (light in the home) as nobody will take care of the children and manage the household", he added.
"The next generation is dependent on the women of today", he said further.
The 15th Provincial Women's Congress in Biliran is jointly sponsored by the provincial government of Biliran through Gov. Rogelio Espina, PCWWI through its President, Dr. Cecil Espina and the WORD-KALIPI Biliran chapter.
The provincial women's congress highlights the celebration of March as "Women's Month" which anchors on the theme "Kababaihan: Yaman ka ng Bayan". (PIA-Biliran) [top]