The Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency (PNVSCA) recognized the country’s modern day heroes in the 2017 Search for Outstanding Volunteers (SOV) awarding ceremony on December 15, 2017 at the Crowne Plaza Manila Galleria, Ortigas Center in Quezon City.

PNVSCA received sixty eight (68) nominations this year and conferred the awards to eight (8) outstanding volunteers and volunteer service organizations. Also, a special citation in volunteerism is given to Peace Corps Philippines.

Two (2) awardees came from the MIMAROPA region, namely: Ms. Delia T. Caabay under the individual-adult category and BAHATALA, Inc. under the organization-not for profit category.

Ms. Caabay is a retired public school teacher known to her former co-teachers and students to be simple and generous in sharing her talents and skills in the spirit of service. She is instrumental in producing competent learners who can communicate effectively and were able to cope with the challenges of life and become productive members of the society. Ms. Caabay is actively involved in disaster response, bloodletting activities, outreach programs and other services for indigenous peoples, prisoners and mental patients, fund-raising drives and many others…all in the spirit of volunteerism.

BAHATALA, Inc. was established to address the need for appropriate and accessible rehabilitation services in the province of Palawan, particularly for the impoverished and those from isolated areas. The organization provides urgent as well as long-term interventions. Culbfeet, for instance require urgent treatment to prevent disabilities. Post stroke patients can recover better with early physiotherapy. Amputees’ chances of regained mobility are enhanced with urgent and long-term services (provision of artificial legs). the name BAHATALA comes from the Tagalog Bahay Hawak Tayo Lakad or in verbatim translation “House to Hold to Stand to Walk”.

The awardees from the MIMAROPA region personally received the award from the members of National Selection Committee together with NEDA OIC Regional Director Atty. Raul S. Anlocotan and OIC ARD Susan A. Sumbeling.

The NEDA MIMAROPA Regional Office served as the chair of the Regional Search Committee (RSC). The RSC promotes and conducts the search at the regional level which includes but not limited to the generation of nominees, validation of information and preparation of documentation.