Kung Love Mo Ang Child Mo, Mundo’y Ingatan Mo

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Maayong buntag kanatong tanan.

To our provincial social welfare and development officer, Alicia B. Lagarde, and her next in line, although I heard that she will soon be leaving us not because she wants to but because she had to, Jeanette Villarubia.

Let me be the first to say thank you for your unfaltering service to the needy.  As much as we will lose an outstanding and dedicated social worker, I am sure that out there we have more Negrenses with the heart to serve, just like Ma’am Villarubia.

Today is a very special day because we will be celebrating the culmination of Children’s Month; really, a special month for all of us, and for all the children in the whole country. So what have we been doing to celebrate this month?

Why do we even celebrate Children’s Month? It’s not just because there is a need for us to educate the adults on the rights of our children, it’s not just to remind us that they are the future of our country and of our world, but it is also to remind us of the beauty of childhood.

Children are really very special. They are carefree and their innocence is inspiring.

Look at a child and what do you see? You see purity, you see beauty.  But sadly, today we see many children who have to carry the burden of their family on their small backs. Sadly, we now see children who has lost their innocence at such a very early age. Really, really sad. But what can we do?

There are a lot of things that we can do.

This year’s theme is “Kung Bright Child and Gusto, Mundo’y Ingatan Mo,” and why not? As the adult population scurries to take advantage of our natural resources, our planet, our Earth, is slowly dying.

I would say that not taking responsibility of our planet, not taking care of our planet is a capital crime, a cardinal sin.

Do we really love our children? We say, yes, and that is why we work so hard. That is why we work so hard to destroy our planet, right?

That is why we unscrupulously destroy the mountains of Ayungon with irresponsible mining; that is why we happily go around the city on a motorcycle that belches poison for our children to breath in; that is why we happily cut down the trees of our forests in order to build homes for our children; that is why we show our children that throwing their garbage anywhere is okey. All these we do because we love our children, right?

How ironic. If we love someone, we make sure that his or her needs are taken cared of, that no harm will come to her or him.

That is love; that is our expression of love.

So, if we really love our children, then why not make sure that our children would be able to live in a planet that is healthy?

That is why I would suggest that the theme should be changed to “Kung Love Mo Child Mo, Mundo’y Ingatan Mo.”

Why do we keep on wanting our children to be bright anyway? Of course it’s our pride to see our children outperform other children and doing well in their class, right?  We are after all preparing them for the future.

But then, come on, are we not pressuring them enough? I know some parents who would enroll their children in supplemental classes or tutorial classes, which they would have to attend after school. As if going to school from 7 in the morning until 4 in the afternoon is not enough.

Hey, do we want our children to enjoy their childhood? Or do we want them to work their brains out until they go beyond their stress level and blow?

Children should be children. Kids should be kids. Childhood is a time when we enjoy ourselves, have fun, and be carefree, because when we reach adulthood, we rarely have time for ourselves. Am I right?

Ok, it’s not bad for us wanting our children to be geniuses, imagine a two year old being able to read a book, amazing, but then we love our children, right? Let us allow them to be kids. That is the essence of Children’s Month. It is basically a reminder to us adults that children should be children, that kids should be kids, and that we are here to ensure that our children are able to enjoy their childhood.

So, again, Kung Love Mo ang Child Mo, Mundo’y Ingatan Mo.

A pleasant day, and to our kids, enjoy yourselves. And to our adults here, enjoy watching your children being children.

Speech given during the closing of the National Children’s Month last October 26, 2010 at Plaza Maria Luisa Suites Inc, Dumaguete City.

Photo taken from Guardian.co.uk.

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