The MIMAROPA Regional Gender and Development Committee (RGADC), in partnership with the Philippine Commission on Women, held the Spoken Word Poetry Session 2.0: Agenda ng Kababaihan, Tungo sa Kaunlaran on March 24, 2021, through  Zoom and Facebook Live, as part of its 2022 National Women’s Month celebration.

This was the second year of the RGADC MIMAROPA to conduct a spoken word poetry session that showcased personally written poems. Aside from members of the RGADC, the Regional Development Council (RDC) members also participated in the poetry session. Selected RDC and RGADC members and representatives from state universities and colleges (SUCs) shared their poems during the event. Each poem highlighted the priority gender issues that should be addressed, the need to include women’s concerns in the government agenda, and the efforts made that shall be continuously done to address gender issues.

In her opening remarks, Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) Executive Director Atty. Kristine E. Yuzon-Chaves commended  RGADC MIMAROPA for sustaining the momentum of last year’s spoken word poetry session. She hoped that the activity will inspire, move, and magnify the awareness of all men and women to work together – louder, and stronger towards a fully gender-responsive MIMAROPA. 

RGADC Chairperson and Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) MIMAROPA Regional Director (RD) Fernando R. De Villa, Jr., expressed his hopes that the activity will make it easier to promote their gender and development advocacy to a large number of people especially to the youth. He affirmed that the RGADC will continue to fight for the women’s agenda and provide heartfelt services anywhere in MIMAROPA. 

RGADC Co-Chairperson Juvelyn V. Gumal-in, Department of Trade and Industry MIMAROPA RD  Joel B. Valera, Civil Service Commission MIMAROPA RD  Atty. Karin Litz P. Zerna, and Occidental Mindoro State College (OMSC) President Dr. Elbert C. Edaniol read their personally written poems during the event.

Meanwhile, among the five student performers were Aifer Liana Jenine V. Felonia from Mindoro State University, Kevin C. Delos Santos from OMSC, Ethan Kisses L. Guevarra from Palawan State University, Jezel B. Fetalco from Romblon State University, and Barbie B. Dejero from Western Philippines University. Mr. Jayceron L. Monteagudo, an instructor from Marinduque State College, was also one of the performers.

In his closing message, RDC Vice Chairperson and NEDA Regional Office MIMAROPA RD Agustin C. Mendoza emphasized that the creative masterpieces of the poets highlighted and recognized women as agents of change and reopened the eyes of the participants to the different gender issues that need to be underscored in the government’s development agenda. He affirmed that they have reflected and will continue to consider these gender concerns in the various plans of the region such as the Regional Development Plan. He encouraged the Council members to continue to take their roles in the full implementation of the Magna Carta of Women and the Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment Plan 2019-2025, and in the realization of Ambisyon Natin 2040.

​​​​​​​A total of 171 participants from the RDC and RGADC member agencies and organizations and students and faculties of SUCs participated in the event through  Zoom platform. More attendees joined and watched the poetry reading session through  Facebook Live. The poets were awarded with certificates of appreciation and simple tokens for their participation.