The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) here has named the Adjaro family from Baguio City as the very first Regional Winner for the Search for Natatanging Pamilyang Pilipino. The said search is done in celebration of the 30th National Family Week with the theme “Urbanisasyon at Pamilyang Pilipino: Magkaagapay sa Pagpapatibay at Pagpapaunlad ng Bansa”.

Guided by the saying “Family is where life begins and love never ends”, the Adjaro family bested other contenders from Baguio City and Tuba, Benguet.

Mr. Johnny and Mrs. Martina Adjaro met in Baguio in 1976. Bound by love, faith, and commitment, the couple got married and started their family life which was blessed with six (6) children.

Determined to provide their children with a bright future, the couple patiently wrestled the hardships of life. Johnny continued to work as a secondary school teacher while Martina had to stop working as a midwife to attend the needs of the family at home.

Having a big family had been a challenge to the couple especially in sending the children to school; hence, they doubled their effort by engaging in farming, planting highland vegetables, raising dairy cows and pigs. These additional sources of income of the family became instrumental in financing the educational expenses of their children. The children also did their part as they qualified in different scholarships.

However, the family’s smooth sailing journey was struck by a big wave when one of their children got pregnant while still attending school. She was then full of despair with the thought of failing her parents. But the couple did not make her feel that way; instead, they encouraged her to keep going. After years of sacrifices, all of their children were able to graduate- two of them are now engineers, one is a financial manager, one followed the footstep of their father as a teacher, one is a nurse, and the other one is an entrepreneur. The success of their children manifests the domineering but tenderhearted parenting role of Johnny and Martina.

While being hands on to their children, the couple did not forget to give back to their community as the family is known to engage in community and civic activities, and to lend a hand to those who are in need.

The pandemic did not hamper the family to continue strengthening their family’s bond. They took advantage of the work from home set-up and the use of technology to maintain open communication, and spiritual sharing among the members.

Nominees also include Mr. Nesar and Mrs. Ligaya dela Cruz’ family who is also from Baguio City. The family is included in the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program in 2009 and was awarded as grand winner in the Regional Huwarang Pantawid Pamilya in the year 2017 by the Department of Social Welfare and Development CAR. From struggling to make ends meet, the couple is able to send their children to school- one of which is a graduating Architecture student and one is taking up Dentistry. Their eldest child is already a licensed teacher.

Meanwhile, Juan Family from Tuba, Benguet was also nominated for the said search. Mr. Sibayan and Mrs. Manding Juan are known in their community for actively participating in community activities especially in promoting agriculture, clean and green activities and actively ministering to the spiritual growth of our community’s children and young people. While Sibayan is performing his duties as the Punong Barangay of Taloy Sur, Manding happily engages in cut flower and livestock production. The couple was able to raise six (6) children, all of whom are already graduates and are engaging in their respective livelihood ventures. The family believes that they could draw strength from each other and by living with the rhythm of Grace. Indeed, in every family there is difficulty. Alongside of this was what the Juan Family believe – to stay humble and kind.

The nominees each received PhP 5,000.00 consolation prize along with a certificate from the DSWD. While the Adjaro family received PhP 10,000.00 and a plaque. The Adjaro family will also represent the Cordillera Region in the upcoming National Search and has already been adjudged as part of the Top 5 contenders of the said search.

The Search for Natatanging Pamilyang Pilipino highlights the resiliency, courage, and strength demonstrated by the Filipino family in overcoming challenges that they face including the COVID-19 pandemic. The Search also looks at hope families cope with difficulties and their ways to adapt to these changes.

“We hope that the stories of the Adjaro, dela Cruz, and Juan family serve as an inspiration for us to continue loving and cherishing our families not just as we celebrate the National Family Week but every day. Despite our busy schedule, let us not forget to spend time with our families who serve as our strength as we face life’s challenges”, DSWD FO CAR Regional Director Leo L. Quintilla shared. #DSWD-CAR, SOCIAL MARKETING UNIT, Nerizza Faye G. Villanueva- Trinidad

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