Rights, Camera, Action!: A Call Against Child Labor

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CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, July 5 (PIA) — One hundred students and teachers from different schools in the municipalities of Camiguin province participated in “Rights. Camera. Action!,” a summer workshop against child labor held at the Grand Provincial Convention Center, Mambajao. 

The three-day workshop conducted by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Regional Office 10 in partnership with the Provincial Government of Camiguin, Department of Education-Camiguin, Anak TV and the National Council for Children’s Television (NCCT) was aimed to eliminate the worst forms of child labor such as sale and trafficking of children, debt bondage, serfdom, prostitution and pornography, use of children for illegal activities—including drug trafficking. 

“Activities like this has been my childhood dream and I thank you for making it a reality. Film-making is never easy and with your help, nothing now is impossible. Camiguingnons are thankful that agencies like NCCT, Anak TV and DOLE 10 are here to help,” said Governor Jurdin Jesus M. Romualdo during the opening ceremonies. 

Among the speakers of the workshop were Nestor U. Torre, Editor of the Philippine Daily Inquirer; Mag Cruz Hatol, NCCT Chairman; Theater actor, Basilidas V. Pilapil, Jr.; NCCT Project Development Officer II, Patrick Jay J. Veril; and Arlyn Z. Bael, Anti-child Labor Program Focal Person of DOLE 10. 

“This workshop is the best avenue to cultivate the creative minds of the students and teachers in harnessing their skills in photography, videography, painting, stage acting and script writing. We do not know that in the future, another world class film maker would come from your group and it would not be a surprise because the people of Camiguin are gifted with cinematic views like the island that says ‘the island of your imagination’,” said OIC Head Jose Errol A. Natividad. 

RUNAWAY WINNER 

“Sisid” has been declared the runaway winner in a one-minute film besting nine others. The film, made by Team Kid’s Zone directed by Roquieto A. Dal from the municipality of Catarman emotionally charged story of a young boy who swims for a peso coin in the port of the island raging against the waves and risks of facing death in exchange of his family’s daily meals. 

“I did not expect our group would take almost all of the awards. It was a stiff competition with potential people in each group. I am very thankful to DOLE 10 because it has opened the youth’s awareness in our society’s issue such as child labor. More importantly, this had developed my personal pursuits in my dream to become a film maker and the youths become better citizens in the Province of Camiguin,” Dal said. 

Kid’s Zone is compose of Leslie D. Abregana, Jonah Crisel H. Laguie (Bonbon National High School), Melton James C. Luanzon, Joy Marie C. Opamin (Fatima College of Camiguin), Ma. Kristine G. Abing, Jon Michael Semilla, Norbert Q. Libago, (Camiguin National High School), Sheena Cascon, (Western Mindanao State University) and Roquieto A. Dal (Liceo de Cagayan University). 

“Sisid” also won for best in photography, best videography, best script, best production design, best direction, outstanding group, best video and best actor. 

Jeffrey Masayon, a grade 4 student of Maac Elementary School won the Best Actor Award. With the group’s initiative, Jeffrey was given a complete set of school supplies, uniform and a cash prize from the NCCT. 

During the film critiquing, Resource Person and Evaluator, Nestor U. Torre appreciated the groups. “For my part, I tried to put the exciting experience in perspective by pointing out to the workshoppers that they were starting a new chapter in their lives: Heretofore, they had been members of the audience, viewing productions made by other people. Now, they were the ones generating the product—for other viewers to benefit from!,” he said. 

Torre also emphasized that it was important for them to realize that they were unique, and should not copy or do mere variations on what others were already making. 

WORTH EMULATING 

DOLE-10 Regional Director Johnson G. Cañete hopes to replicate the same activity in the different provinces of Northern Mindanao. 

“This activity is a big challenge to our different DOLE 10 Provincial Heads and worth emulating to address the eradication of child labor activities in your respective provinces,” he said. 

“This is the start of our partnership. I thank the NCCT, Anak TV, Department of Education and the province of Camiguin for this opportunity. Given a short time, you (participants) produced one-minute films as tools to spread awareness against child labor and to share your thoughts on children’s rights concerning them and the community,” Cañete added. 

The culmination activity and awarding of prizes on the third day also displayed remarkable masterpieces made by the participants. Paintings, photography, stage acting and constellation were among the outputs presented. (Glenford C. Labial/DOLE-10/PIA)

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