The Street Children of Sr. M. Marcia Antigua
by May T. Mediano
April 15, 2010
In 1986, the presence of street children in Cebu was getting so disturbing, sleeping in sidewalks and market places. It is Sr. Marcia’s vision that while working in the Carbon Market area and Pasil, she had to rescue the children and teenage girls who were prone to be exploited and abused. Thus the “Dangpanan” – meaning a safe place or a refuge was founded.
The increasing number of girls came for help and while Sr. Marcia rented a small apartment in the market for the children, it wasn’t enough to accommodate the teenage girls, hence, the expansion to build a center in Laray Inayawan, Pardo for the girls was a dream come true. While the apartment in Carbon Market continued to be a depot for the children who needed a rehab program, it also served as a day care center for the vendor’s children in the market area. It is depressing to see street children in high moral risk and in need of special protection ranging from ages 5-18 years old, living in market stalls with destitute parents, who cannot afford to go to school while maltreated, neglected and are victims of abuse.
Sr. Marcia’s vision, that “every child will be afforded opportunities for education and Christian development in child-friendly community where families are empowered and poverty alleviated”. Twenty-four years later, the Dangpanan Center has strived to continue rehabilitating children, teenagers and young women in providing afforded opportunities for education and personal development in becoming responsible members of our society.
Today, Sr. Marcia’s Dangpanan Project has full coverage in Ermita, Carbon, Taboan, Pier, Mabolo, Laray, Labangon, Banawa, Tisa, Buhisan, Punta. There are two centers at present: Saint Mary Euphrasia in Laray, Inayawan Pardo for the Elementary and high school students; Blessed Maria Droste Center in Banawa Hills for the college and vocational students.
Our recent Summer Picnic 2009 afforded BisayaBulletin.com to turn over donations from our Donors and Sponsors: Dindo/Josabel Porral, Berto Sepe, Cris and Sherry Florido, Todd & Evelyn Castanares, Gemma Boiser-Sy, Jackee Gullas-Weckman, Inday Mahinay, Winnie Murillo, Pacita Imbong Kash and Family, Melot Maderazo, Paul and Daisy Uytengsu, Tateng and Dinah Katindig, Carmen and Manolo Burgos, Melvyn and Claribel Ybanez, Gerry and Fiza Du, Jojo and Fatima Echavez, Inday Cabrera, Pamela Chu, Neria Myers, Cecilia Suelto St. Mars, Trixie Lebumfacil, Augs and Joy Mayol.
This year’s 2010 will be another fundraising event for BisayaBulletin.com in striving to continue our pledge and commitment to support the Dangpanan Project of Sr. M. Marcia Antigua.