top of page
  • The ULF Team

Play It Forward celebrates Play Advocacy Week with mural paintings in Quezon City and Cagayan De Oro

Many other organizations and institutions across the Philippines celebrated the Play Advocacy Week from November 18 to 24, 2018. One way that Play It Forward made play happen was through mural painting activities in the National Children’s Hospital in Quezon City, and in a community in Barangay Canitoan, Cagayan De Oro.

Many other organizations and institutions across the Philippines celebrated the Play Advocacy Week from November 18 to 24, 2018. One way that Play It Forward made play happen was through mural painting activities in the National Children’s Hospital in Quezon City, and in a community in Barangay Canitoan, Cagayan De Oro.


Play champions all over the country took part in the first Play Advocacy Week this year, in celebration of the National Children’s Month. The week was full of fun play activities organized by partners, bringing joy to children nationwide.


Led by Unilab Foundation and Play It Forward (PIF), Play Advocacy Week aims to spread awareness on the importance of play for a child’s holistic development and mental health. Play It Forward is Unilab Foundation’s program that enables access to therapeutic play for children in vulnerable areas. They focus specifically on pediatric patients for PIF Wellness, and children in disaster-prone or disaster-struck areas for PIF Resilience.


Helping women and children play it forward

Play It Forward invited Ged Alangui of the Colors of StoBoSa artwork in Baguio to paint a mural in the National Children’s Hospital (NCH) in Quezon City.

Together with the Play It Forward team and volunteers from Kythe Foundation, the mural was completed inside the Women and Children Protection Unit (WCPU), a unit in the NCH that assists abused women and children.


The music-themed mural was painted in the room where the WCPU Committee Member conducts comprehensive interviews regarding the case of their patients. If warranted, that's when they conduct Physical Examination and when results come out positive, they file a report.


Ged shared the concept behind the mural, “The mural’s concept is to focus on something that the pediatric patients could identify with, to relax them and keep them entertained. So I thought of painting musical instruments from the Philippines and all over the world.”


When it comes to cases involving children, which they get more often, the staff in the WCPU first tries to establish rapport in order to make them feel at ease, as it can be difficult to get children to share their traumatic experiences.


According to Dr. Joanna Khris Biag, WCPU Committee Member and Medical Officer IV at NCH, “I think the mural helps in terms of making the room less imposing. It makes the room less scary for those [doing] the interview, which are usually kids.”


The beginnings of play

The second location for the mural was in a Gawad Kalinga community in Cagayan De Oro.


The community is near and dear to the Play It Forward program, as this is where their first play space was established, back in 2013. The community, Barangay Canitoan, was greatly affected by Typhoon Sendong, one of the worst disasters to hit Cagayan De Oro. Play It Forward built the play space to help the children in the community release stress and recover from the trauma.


Mural artist Archie Blanco wanted to brighten up the play space and make it feel more like home for the children. With 140 children volunteers, seven walls in the play space were painted with nature and play themes. The children participated through play activities such as tagu-taguan and habulan. To mark the place as their own, the children were asked to put their handprints on the walls.


Play Advocacy Week 2018 may be over, but the mission to build a healthier Philippines continues. Play It Forward makes play happen all year long.


If you wish to partner with Play It Forward, you may contact the secretariat at (+632) 858-1000 local 8163 or email partnerships@unilabfoundation.org. You may also visit www.facebook.com/PlayItForwardPH and www.unilabfoundation.org. See you in next year’s Play Advocacy Week!

7 views0 comments
bottom of page