PWD wins silver medal in int’l skills competition

Julius Rosalinda, a person with disability (PWD) from Tagum City, Davao del Norte, brought honor and pride to the Philippines when he won a silver medal and the Excellence Award in the Waste Re-Use Category during the 9th International Abilympics competition​ in Bordeaux, France in March.

The International Abilympics is a professional skills competition for people with disabilities and special needs.

Julius was among the nine PWDs who competed in the nine skills contests. They were supported by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA), and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).

This year’s competition was participated in by more than a thousand delegates from 35 countries.

Julius showed his prowess when he assembled a wine rack using wine corks, box, used ribbons, pins, paint can, old wood (from a burned house), pebbles, old glass, and old jigger.

Recognizing the feat of Julius and the team, DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman said, “The efforts and hard work of the whole team are greatly appreciated. Likewise, it is only fitting to congratulate Julius for winning a silver medal in the Waste Re-Use Competition. He serves as an inspiration to his fellow PWDs.”

Crippled by polio when he was just one year old, Julius has overcome his disability with his determination to continuously hone his skills in designing objects which he sells to earn a living.

An accounting graduate, he was also the grand champion in the Philippines’ “Kakayahan 2014: National Skills Competition of Persons with Disabilities”, with his entry of a unique candle holder.

He used to repair electric fans and other appliances at DSWD Home for the Aged in Tagum City. He is now an officer of Davao Del Norte PWD Federation.

“PWDs have the capacity to improve their lives and be productive members of society, as exemplified by Julius and the other members of the Philippine team who competed in the Abilympics,” Sec. Soliman emphasized.

Empowering PWDs

As the lead agency in social protection, the DSWD continuously advocates the welfare and well-being of PWDs, and implements programs with local government units (LGUs) and non-government organizations (NGOs) aimed at empowering the sector.

Among the programs implemented for the PWD sector are Early Detection, Prevention and Intervention of Disability (EDPID) among 0-6 year-old children, Tuloy-Aral Walang Sagabal (TAWAG), alternative family support services, family counseling, training and employment, and referral services.

The Department also provides services to PWDs in its various residential and non-residential facilities nationwide. These are psychological and medical services; vocational skills training on scientific massage, handicraft making, tailoring/dressmaking, watch repair, computer repair, canteen management, daily living skills; and job placement.

In the first quarter of 2016, the Department has served 476 PWDs in its centers such as the Rehabilitation Sheltered Workshop (RSW), National Vocational Rehabilitation Center (NVRC), Area Vocational Rehabilitation Center (AVRC), and Elsie Gaches Village (EGV) for children suffering from mental disabilities.

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Introvert, wanderer, blogger, foodie, a hip-hop music writer, and one of the co-founders of a tech start-up company called GigsManila.