Published on: September 22, 2023 | Written by: Beatriz Faye G. Carreon

Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte – The ongoing struggle against drug abuse is a relentless endeavor that requires steadfast dedication and resolve. Through their collective commitment, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Region IX demonstrated the potential to bring about tangible transformation during the “Buhay Ingatan, Droga’y Ayawan (BIDA): Caravan sa Rehiyon Nueve” Awarding Ceremony, held at the Cultural and Sports Complex in Dapitan City, Zamboanga del Norte. This event aimed to unite communities, raise awareness about the destructive consequences of drug abuse, extend assistance to those in need, and encourage collaboration among various stakeholders.

The proceedings commenced with a heartfelt greeting from Hon. Seth Frederick P. Jalosjos, Mayor of Dapitan City, where he emphasized the importance of solidarity in combating drug abuse. He expressed, “The ongoing struggle against drug abuse necessitates unwavering dedication and resolve. Through our collective unity in endeavors, spreading awareness about the dire repercussions of drug abuse, offering assistance to those requiring support, and nurturing cooperation among communities, we possess the capacity to bring about substantial transformation.” 

Mayor Jalosjos’s words acted as a heartfelt reminder that by uniting, communities have the potential to collaboratively strive for a safer and more prosperous future, one that is untainted by the presence of drugs. 

After the Mayor’s welcoming address, Jose Ruel D. Trobanos, the Chief of the Local Government Monitoring and Evaluation Division (LGMED) at DILG IX, provided further insight into the purpose of the Buhay Ingatan, Droga’y Ayawan (BIDA): Caravan sa Rehiyon Nueve.” Chief Trobanos stressed that the BIDA program simultaneously played a vital role in enhancing the participant’s well-being and nurturing their artistic growth, with a specific focus on the youth. 

Paisal O. Abutazil, CESO III, the Regional Director of DILG IX, discussed his viewpoint regarding the diverse influence of the BIDA program. He highlighted that the BIDA competitions extended beyond being mere contests; instead, they served as pathways for personal development and the strengthening of communities. RD Abutazil underscored the significance of nurturing talent, especially among the younger generation, and emphasized how initiatives like BIDA played a crucial part in realizing this objective.

The pinnacle of the occasion was the awards presentation, where outstanding achievement were recognized across diverse categories: 

  1. BADAC and BIDA: Recognizing the outstanding efforts of Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils in the region. 
  2. Mural Painting Contest: Showcasing the artistic talents of participants in creating drug awareness murals. 
  3. Drum & Lyre Contest: Celebrating the rhythmic skills and creativity of competing teams. 
  4. Short Film Making Contest: Recognizing the power of visual storytelling in conveying anti-drug messages. 
  5. Poster Making Contest: Honoring the artists behind compelling anti-drug posters. 
  6. Sayaw BIDA Contest: Showcasing the dance talents of participants in promoting drug awareness. 
  7. Tiktok Contes of the BIDA Song: Celebrating creative adaptations of the BIDA theme song.

The event ended on a positive note as champions from each category were honored with their rightfully earned accolades, reinforcing DILG IX’s dedication to its mission of cultivating a drug-free and harmonious community.

The BIDA Caravan sa Rehiyon Nueve Awarding Ceremony served as a powerful symbol of the impact of working together as a community to strive for a drug-free society. It deeply influenced and motivated all attendees, leaving a lasting impression and encouraging them to persevere in their crucial efforts against drug abuse.