Unilab Ideas Positive Alumna on Rekindling her Passion to Serve
But Genecil says that her passion to serve is what fuels her to pursue her commitment with the community. "Sa lahat ng na-experience ko, isa lang po natutunan ko. That by helping the community, you're helping yourself."
21-year-old Genecil Dalian was a member of Team Green Label, who finished off as the 2nd runner up in the Unilab Ideas Positive competition last 2012. Genecil, together with four more BS Entrepreneurship students conducted their “Gintong Bukirin para sa Kinabukasan” Project, which aims to combat malnutrition through a feeding program sustained by organic agriculture.
Hailing from the University of Southeastern Philippines in Mindanao, Team Green Label identified Pilar Rodriguez Elementary School in Davao City as their chosen community. From the seed money they received from Unilab worth P100,000, coupled with their hard work and dedication, Genecil shares how their project has grown.
“We’ve established 1,000 sq. km. of organic agriculture. Madami kaming tinanim na kamatis, kangkong, kalabasa, talong. Meron din kaming mushroom culture. Portion of it binibenta sa community, portion of it are being fed to the children. This is how we were able to combat the malnutrition sa school nila.”
A year after the competition, Genecil now works as a call center agent in Davao. But she says, her job doesn’t stop her and her team from going back to the community. But she understands that they cannot do the project by themselves, so they looked for partners.
“We gave the legacy to the extension of our university. Sila na bahala kung sinong mga students yung pwedeng mag-continue. We have also volunteers na mga nanay din. Sila yung nagluluto.”
Genecil also says that 90% of their target beneficiaries have improved their weight, from wasted to normal. When asked what their team’s secret was, Genecil says it’s all about getting into the details.
“You have to be detailed. Those details, you have to pursue it with accuracy. It should be visible and realizable. Yung kaya lang sa oras and resources na meron kayo.”
Despite the success of their project, Genecil admits it was not easy to do community work alongside their studies. The school was almost an hour commute away from her home.
“As students, di naging madali yun. Kasi yung time namin is for studies, part of our time for our family, personal, tapos sa community. You have to divide your time. Kung hindi kami makakapunta dun sa area, parang kulang yung week namin.”
But Genecil says that her passion to serve is what fuels her to pursue her commitment with the community. “Sa lahat ng na-experience ko, isa lang po natutunan ko. That by helping the community, you’re helping yourself.”
And to the aspiring teams of this year’s Ideas Positive competition, Genecil has a message for you, “whatever happens, panalo pa rin sila sa community nila—sa puso nila.”