SM Cares Program on Disability Affairs, together with the Down Syndrome Association of the Philippines (DSAPI) celebrated the 21st Year of Happy Walk at the Skydome in SM North Edsa last Sunday, February 24, 2013.
For most of my life, I have lived to see the challenges of special people here in our society. I have an uncle who is special. He was diagnosed to be mentally challenged early in his life. His brothers and sisters tried to provide for him a normal life. But society can just be so cruel. My uncle took a turn for the worse when he was repeatedly teased by his colleagues (we learned about it too late) back when I was in grade school. He used to be very social. Despite his disability, he was a very sweet uncle. After his long day at work, he will regularly give us chips for pasalubong at the end of the day. After all the things he has gone through all those year, he now barely converses with people.
Here’s sharing with you a short post I published last month when we celebrated my Uncle’s birthday. –> Happy birthday, Uncle Gilbert!
This is why I totally support SM Cares in its efforts to edify the least of our brothers a.k.a. people with disabilities (PWD). The Happy Walk is held every February. This is a part of the celebration of the Down Syndrome Consciousness Month. This year’s celebration saw the participating PWDs and their families get engaged with free treats of cotton candies, unlimited popcorn and face painting. A photo contest and fun games also kept the atmosphere a truly happy occasion, true to the event’s objective of promoting a better understanding of people with Down Syndrome so they can easily interact with the public, achieve self-reliance and continue to live decent lives.
Another thing I am very impressed with SM is when I started noticing from years back the staff they employ in their washroom areas who are deaf and mute. I think this comes with the SM Cares Program on Disability Affairs resolve to provide equal opportunities for the PWDs. Although there are limitations to the jobs that they will be provided. Programs like this encourages and advocates a change in attitude of the community toward PWDs and believes that the greatest barrier is the lack of understanding about the special needs of PWDs. Thank you, SM for taking this stand and following through as we support the PWDs and special needs people!