600 special needs kids to meet for psycho-social, fun activities

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MANILA, Nov. 21, 2014 — About 600 children with special needs are set to join a one-day event filled with psycho-social, sports, and fun activities in Batangas State University on Dec. 7, coinciding with the International Day for Persons with Disabilities.

“Kasama, Sama Ka Year 4” will treat special kids to enjoyable activities that would help socialize them and draw out their talents, said Gerry Duwin Dela Zerna, Guided and Unified Interaction for the Development of Children, Inc. (GUIDE) president.

Gerry Duwin Dela Zerna, Guided and Unified Interaction for the Development of Children, Inc. (GUIDE) president shares a light moment with a child with special needs during one of the GUIDE camps. (Photo: GUIDE)

Connection, socialization

“It is our way of providing connection, care, guidance, socialization, and integration to CWSN through games, music, dance, storytelling and other fun stuff at the same time celebrating and paying tribute to persons with disabilities on their international day,” he added.

The camping activities, anchored on the year’s theme, “Choices, Chances, Challenges: Embracing Special Children”, will “showcase performances by special kids and their volunteer caregivers,” Dela Zerna explained.

The kids will engage in psycho-social activities, kiddie Olympics, puppet=-making, puppet shows, art-making, cultural shows, and acrobatic performances. Participants will also have dances, mime, and sing songs.

“One of the objectives of Kasama, Sama Ka is to provide psycho-social activities to children with special needs (CWSN), allowing them enjoy leisure and sports with other children and passion-driven volunteers,” Dela Zerna said.

According to him, the event is also a venue to integrate the children into the community, encouraging people to share with them, help them, and develop acceptance of them.

Volunteer caregivers

“Our own little acts of kindness translate to humane interaction and exchange of experiences and compassion causes our advocacy,” he added.

A seminar will also be conducted for parents and SPED teachers on “owning up to choices, chances and challenges in embracing special children.”

Dela Zerna shared that psychology major students at Batangas Stare University will volunteer as caregivers to the children for the day, assisting them in their participation in the activities.

Aside from “Kasama, Sama Ka”, GUIDE has been holding annual summer camps for special kids, with more participants, for the past 19 years.

The foundation was organized by special children advocates, including, teachers, entrepreneurs, and individuals from different disciplines who are oriented to community service. (Oliver Samson / CBCPNews)

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