Junior Chamber International (JCI) Manila, a leadership development organization dedicated to creating positive change in communities, has launched Project CPAG (Cerebral Palsy Awareness Group) this month in line with Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month. The group aims to continue to increase knowledge and raise awareness of the public on cerebral palsy and provide support for marginalized families with children who have cerebral palsy (CP). The chapter began helping the CP community in 2015 and pioneered programs under the Golden Heart initiative.
Cerebral palsy is a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain balance and posture. It is the most common motor disability in childhood and is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are approximately 1-4 cases of CP in every 1,000 live births.
Through Project CPAG, JCI Manila aims to help families have access to relevant medical practices by publishing an easy-to-read, three-part children’s book series highlighting the Bobath Approach, a type of physiotherapy treatment that aims to improve movement and mobility in patients with damage to their central nervous system. The books will be published in Filipino and will contain theories and illustrations of best practices by Dr. Pablo Beleen, a renowned international specialist in the treatment of cerebral palsy and pediatric rehabilitation. Dr. Beleen has been practicing the Bobath approach in the Philippines for over 15 years.
The first book will focus on raising awareness about cerebral palsy and showcase the endeavors of a CP patient. The second will feature the perspectives and challenges of caregivers. Finally, the third will bring to life how it takes a village and a lot of compassion in providing the best life CP patients could experience by introducing the community of CP patients. The books will be launched in a symposium on April 26, 2023, at the San Andres Sports Complex with speakers discussing the Bobath method, developmental pediatrics, and the rights of Persons with Disabilities (PWD).
“With Project CPAG, we aim to raise awareness of cerebral palsy and provide knowledge and access to relevant medical practices. We hope to make a difference in the lives of our CP beneficiaries and their families,” said Bobbit Castro, JCI Manila CPAG Project Chairman.
JCI Manila is collaborating with the Manila City Government through the office of Hon. Mayor Honey Lacuna and Hon. Vice Mayor Yul Servo to select 100 cerebral palsy patients who will benefit from Project CPAG. JCI Manila will also distribute the books to local government hospitals and health and welfare offices in the project’s initial phase.
“I would like to extend my gratitude to JCI-Manila for selecting the city of Manila as the primary beneficiary of their Project CPAG. This initiative is a significant help for families with CP patients, especially those in the marginalized sector. We are committed to supporting JCI-Manila in this project,” said Hon. Vice Mayor Yul Servo.
While there is no cure for cerebral palsy, treatment can improve the lives of those with the condition. It is crucial to begin a treatment program as early as possible. With the launch of Project CPAG, JCI Manila is taking a significant step in raising awareness and providing support for cerebral palsy patients in the Philippines.
You can help support this project by getting in touch with Jun Enriquez, Marketing Director for Project CPAG at 09175333187 or emailing [email protected] or visiting www.jcimanila.org or JCI Manila’s official Facebook page.