The Department of Social Welfare and Development Field Office Cordillera Administrative Region (DSWD FO CAR) together with the Mountain Province Local Government Unit (PLGU) takes the lead in the conduct of this year’s Cordillera Month Celebration.

With the theme, “One Autonomous Cordillera: Ensuring Social Development and Inclusive Growth in the New Normal”, the Region is celebrating its 35th year of establishment as an administrative region.

“The Cordillera Region has continuously fought hard for its people. We take pride that Cordillerans are known for their resilience, unity, and determination to rise beyond the challenges that they face. For the past two years, our quest for social development and inclusive growth have been slowed down by the ill effects of the pandemic but our passion never faltered. As we slowly adapt to the new normal, we are also looking forward to slowly reaching our dream- a progressive and autonomous Cordillera” DSWD FO CAR Regional Director Arnel B. Garcia, CESO II said.

President Corazon Aquino issued Executive Order (EO) No. 220 on 15 July 1987 creating the Cordillera Region as a special temporary administrative region while efforts for the establishment of an autonomous region was underway. Through the EO, the provinces of Kalinga, Apayao, Abra, Benguet, Ifugao, Mountain Province and the chartered city of Baguio composed the Cordillera Region.

The DSWD FO CAR previously hosted the Cordillera Month celebration in 2016 with the theme, “CAR at 29: Working Together for an Autonomous and Empowered Cordillera”.

“More than three (3) decades have passed and the Cordillera region is still on its journey towards autonomy. The DSWD is one with the region in promoting activities that would help in the development and growth of the Cordillera communities”, Director Garcia further said.

This year’s celebration includes the conduct of various activities such as the setting up of Men-ilako Tako Market Fair in Bontoc which will last until 30 July 2022, Session Road Sunday Market Showcase, Cordillera Nutrisong Contest for Local Nutrition Committees, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Infodrive and Palit Pera Caravan, photo exhibit, online and face to face caravans and fora, fun run and Kapihan on the State of the Region Address.

Among the highlights of the celebration is the Cordillera Weaving Summit, Cordillera Day Celebration featuring the Search for Mr. and Ms. Cordillera Youth Autonomy Ambassadors, Cordillera Festival Hybrid Show and Cordillera Month Culminating Program.

On 1 July 2022, the kick-off for the celebration was conducted in Sagada, Mountain Province. The morning program commenced with a tree planting activity led by the DSWD represented by RD Arnel B. Garcia, CESO II, and LGU Sagada Mayor Felicito O. Dula. This was also joined by the various members of the Regional Development Council including the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) Director Susan Sumbeling, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Director Ralph Pablo, Commission of Population (POPCOM) OIC Regional Director Cecile Aguilan-Basawil, Department of Health Assistant Regional Director Dr. Amelita Pangilinan, and Filipino-Japanese Foundation of Northern Luzon (Abong) Executive Director Arnel Cabanisas who is also the Vice-Chairperson of the Regional Social Development Committee (RSDC) which is chaired by the DSWD.

First time since the pandemic in 2020, the Cordillera Gong Relay will once again take place. The relay will be conducted among the municipalities within the provinces instead of the region-wide tradition.

“We enjoin everyone not just to take part in the Cordillera Month celebration but to make a stand and push for Cordillera autonomy. Let us work together for a better Cordillera”, Director Garcia said. #DSWD-CAR, SOCIAL MARKETING UNIT, Nerizza Faye G. Villanueva- Trinidad

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