Salamat Kaayo.

By Aditya Kumar.

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21st June 2017. The trip to Jagna is finally coming to an end. I’m having mixed reactions about leaving this place. I cannot wait to go back to civilization and buildings and skyline and cars and actual nightlife but at the same time, it is going to be extremely difficult for me to say goodbye to my family here. The family who for three weeks has treated me like their own son. Cyrus and Louella, my business clients have also been a part of my family here in Jagna. They have invited us several times to their house to be a part of the family dinner and have invited us over on the coming Friday to celebrate his Grandmother’s birthday. They readily accepted us as a part of their business and without their help and coordination this trip wouldn’t have been possible. I will be flying back to Hong Kong with all of these people edged in my memory and a changed perspective on life.

The past two weeks have been very tiring regarding my business because of the various implementations and schemes that we have to offer. We have been running from one radio station to the other and from one Barangay captain’s house to the other.

Our final task has integrated from helping a micro-business to solving a macro issue in Jagna. On trying to solve Cyrus’ issue of having fewer tailors, we found out that there is a need for tailors in entire Jagna. We went to TESDA’s (Technical Education and Skills Development Authority) provincial center in Jagna located in Poblacion where we found out that the only tailoring course provided in Bohol is located in Tubigon which is nearly 70kms away from Jagna. So Dora and I decided that the only way this shortage of tailor supply can be solved is by starting a tailoring course in Jagna to help the people here and in the nearby towns. It would not only solve this issue but also help the Out of Youth Academy which comprises of the youth of Jagna that is unemployed and uneducated due to the lack of financial resources. TESDA in Jagna had a course that provided tailoring and dress making classes nearly ten years back but it had to be stopped because of the expensive and fragile machinery that had to be transported in from other towns and the lack of interest shown by people in this field. So we decided to take the help of radio stations to help spread the news that a new tailoring course will be launched in the town in the coming months.

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We visited three radio stations in the area, San Miguel Radio Station, DYJC (the government-owned radio station) and Radio Natin. The people there were so friendly and on hearing us and our plans for the community immediately agreed to help us out and broadcast the news. We’ve been interviewed by San Miguel radio station three times on three different occasions to help spread the news. I was excited but very nervous because it was the first time I would be coming on the radio or on television. The whole experience was unreal. Who knew I would come to the Philippines and come on their T.V and radio?

We also met with the Barangay captains of Poblacion and Tehero who on finding out I’m Indian greeted me with “Kaisa Hain” which means how are you? I was amused and shocked by the fact that the people here knew Hindi and watched Bollywood movies. At the end of the day, we have managed to collect nearly 50 applicants interested in taking up this tailoring course and hopefully with the help of TESDA we can bring about a change in the area and can help the community.

This would be the last blog I post from the Philippines about this area and I would like to thank everyone for this wonderful opportunity and their warm and friendly hospitality. This is one of the best experiences I’ve had in my life and I will always remember the beach and the sunset and the peace and the tranquility of the place.

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