Blog Entry #2: Sinulog! Syagit ug kusog

Fiestas are a part of the Filipino culture and tradition. It is a religious festivity in honor of the patron saints of the neighbourhood. Different activities are held to bring entertainment to the community people and its visitors.
The religion of the inhabitants of Brgy. La Concepcion is mainly Roman Catholic, which comprises the 97% of its populace. Needless to say, the community definitely celebrates fiestas. Two of its puroks namely Purok 6 (Damusag) and Purok 2 (Upper Palid) are celebrating the feast of Sto. Niño every January.

The ADZU SOM students assigned in Brgy. La Concepcion were invited to the Sinulog Celebration at Damusag on January 5, 2019. The Sinulog Parade started at 8 o’clock in the morning. Church clusters from other puroks participated in the parade and showdown. Everyone danced with all their might to the beat of the Sinulog music. With the convivial nature of the community, the community people gave the medical students a chance to dance. It was then that the medical students were first introduced to the community. After the parade and dance showdown, a mass was held. It was then followed by lunch in which the whole community dine together.

Moreover, the medical students were also invited to Upper Palid’s Fiesta last January 12. They were requested to render a dance number, and three of them were invited to judge the Dance Competition and the Ms. Teen Upper Palid 2019, which was the highlight of the night’s events.

The festivities truly show the unity and the devotion of the community people to their patron saint, Sr. Sto Niño and it is a privilege that the ADZU SOM students were able to take part in these gatherings and know the community better.


Blog Entry #1: Genesis

As medical and public health students of Ateneo de Zamboanga University (AdZU), we focus on helping provide solutions to health problems of people and communities to Western Mindanao and beyond, and protecting and improving community health through disease prevention, education, and a lot more. As we set foot in our communities, we put into our hearts the essence of cura personalis – care and concern for the whole person, and magis – to go above and beyond in everything we do. Being given the opportunity to touch and help other people’s lives in a positive way is amazing. It is something that we are grateful for and not take lightly

Thursday, January 3. Our class started with a five hour trip going to Sindangan, Zamboanga del Norte. Our group moved into Barangay La Concepcion, located 13km away from the town proper and settled in the Barangay Hall. Doctors from AdZU and our community preceptor, Dr. Rex Samson accompanied us. We were able to arrive safely, thanks to the bus provided by the school.

Photo of the team after arriving in the Barangay Hall.
Photo by Narjavel Usman

We were also able to meet with the Barangay Captain, Mr. Crispin Taruc Jr., and the barangay midwife, Mrs. Mariven Alcorin. Our group will coordinate with them for the activities that we plan to do.
This is just the beginning of our journey with the community. We maybe far from our comfort zone, but we are here not to just survive community life, we are here to live it.