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“A knock is a noise that startles us to stand up and open the door. Perhaps some knocks won’t just let us open doors but also hearts.”

The call for the Draw Disability Contest in celebration of the 41st National Disability Prevention and Rehabilitation Week 2019 not only opened new doors but also gave opportunity to learners with Special Educational Needs (LSENs) from San Juan National High School to showcase their talents in Poster-Making held last July 20, 2019 at the Commission on Human Rights Office, Diliman Quezon City.

San Juan National High School actively participated in the said contest with the theme “Lokal na Pamahalaan: Kabalikat sa Pagtupad ng Karapatan ng mga Batang may Kapansanan”. It is organized by NORFIL foundation, Philippine Partnership on children with Disability (PPCWD), Leonard Foundation, Philippine Partnership Commission on Human Rights (CHR), Center for Development Arts Manila and other supporters as part of the 41st NDPR week celebration.

The Poster-Making Competition was rolled out to all public and private schools nationwide with the partnership of People through the Disability Affairs Office (PDAO) and the Department of Education (DepED) to enjoin all learners with disabilities. Participants are those currently enrolled in Grade 7 to Grade 10 in a mainstream or full inclusion program.

Joshua Veneracion from SJNHS, who was diagnosed of having Psycho- Social Disability, won Third Place. He received a cash prize of P500.00, a Certificate of Recognition and token. The top plum went to an orthopedically handicapped girl named Angel from Olangapo City. Second Place was awarded to Harrold from Quezon City who has autism.

Other participants also received certificates of recognition and tokens as prizes. Artworks of all the participants will be displayed in PDAO’s gallery to showcase the talents of the LSENs. Other LSENs from SJNHS who participated in the event were Christian T. Silverio (with Psycho-social Disability) from 7- Carnation, Francis Louis Tapar (with Psycho-social Disability) from 7- Carnation , and Mhar Roymee Lou De Guzman (with ADHD) from 11-TVL.

Pride and prestige were given to our LSENs when they were invited by the PDAO San Juan to present their artworks during the Flag Ceremony at the City Hall of San Juan last July 22, 2019. The Honorable Mayor Francis Javier M. Zamora, together with San Juan employees and members of the City Council, gave warm congratulations to all the learners who participated in the contest. This event boosts the LSENs’ confidence and beliefs that they are still at par with the regular learners.

Article written by:

Melany C. Fernandez (Teacher III, SJNHS)

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