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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

In just a few weeks more

Yes, I just came from the PGCA Annual Convention. That was really an event to reckon with in terms of attendance. I heard people telling me that because attendance was made a must, hence many counselors literally made it into a blockbuster! One of the speakers, Fr. Aquino, mentioned that it should have been held in Araneta Coliseum!

It was announced in there that as of now, the PRB's Rules and Regulations are now with the PRC just awaiting one PRC Commissioner's signature more before it gets published (unless there will be another recommendation for revision after its having gone through 13 revisions!). PGCA is lending P50,000 to the PRB for its publication. Now, 15 days after its publication, the process of applying for the Grandfather's Clause shall begin. And so with applications for the Board Exams which are targeted to be held come January 2008. So those affected among us, be watchful and ready with your requirements. As soon as I get the next news on this, I shall immediately blog it in. In the meantime, let's do our best in our work of Counseling our clients to the best that we can. And let's be conscious of the ethics we practice because that's the next issue to be looked into, together with the Standards of Good Practice.

God bless

Sunday, May 20, 2007

An Invitation to a Curriculum Forum

Yes, I just got an official invitation letter (sans the signatures of the invitees - see letter below) through the PGCA Secretary Janice Albano, from PGCA President Dr. Rosa Maria Llanes and PRBGC Chair Dr. Rhodelia Gabriel to a Curriculum Forum . The content of this Forum would be very important for school personnel involved in revising their respective curricula for Guidance & Counseling departments. Counselors are one of them since we also have to look into the curricula we ha've had in our trainings. So please pass this message to our colleagues and respective administrators in particular so this event be well attended. Here is the letter:

May 17, 2007

Dear Colleagues,

This is to invite you to attend the Curriculum Forum at the Colegio de San Juan de Letran, Intramuros, Manila on May 29, 2007 at 8:00 a.m-5:00p.m. The objective is to standardize the curriculum and syllabi of the master’s and doctoral degrees. Please bring your curriculum, syllabi and other related materials. The registration fee is Php1000. You may pay at PNB Current Account No. 00-275-830563-8 and fax the deposit slip to fax no. 931-02-80.

For further inquiry, you may contact Ms. Janice Albano, PGCA secretary at 931-02-80 or Ms. Erlinda Pontilar at Letran at 527-76-93 loc.21 or 09155777242.

Anticipating your participation in this historical event.

Very truly yours

Dr. Rosa Maria I. Llanes
President, Philippine Guidance and
Counseling Association, Inc.

Dr. Rhodelia L. Gabriel
Chair, Professional Regulatory Board
of Guidance and Counseling

Saturday, May 19, 2007

An Advocacy for Nationalism & Service

This thought occupied me while watching one priest announced by COMELEC as the elected Governor of Pampanga: Fr. Ed "Among" Panlilio. The announcer was saying in the following words not necessarily verbatim: With a vote of ...over so and so's votes of ...the newly elected Governor of Pampanga is Fr. Ed "Among" Panlilio...

Oh, so what was happening did take place: the surge of grassroot support for Among as well as the negative propaganda right on the day before the elections which I read on the popers! I've heard a Kapampangan tell me "Father, it's a choice between this type of candidate over that type of candidate. Since both alternatives do not speak well of us, so we Kapampangans want to have a better identity. We shun what's wrong, we choose a better alternative. Or else, what will people say about us? If we are left choosing between the two only, then we shall have given our yes to their activities."

I am writing these thoughts here as a responsible member of the community, particularly as a Counselor. If my views about the matter can be clarified through this blog, then it should belong here. Counselors also are called to have some advocacies, and I believe this is one area I'd like to advocate for a better, guilt-free and forward-looking electoral action as a responsible person for the common good.

I used to hear whenever elections get over in some other country that after announcing the number of votes, the fact of election gets to have a stronger push with the words "We have a new Governor..." The whole electoral exercise we all did together as an action of all legitimate constituents for the good of their country or locality: to choose someone who can do the task of governance. Each one counts in the whole process, and when everyone's voice who came to say it through the ballot has been accounted and heard, the acknowledgment of having a new Governor or any official for that matter through the elections is an affirmation of our unity as a people. Unfortunately, we don't get to have that feeling when the number of those who chose this or that candidate gets more emphasized over the fact that we came together and chose who was thought better for the task that can give us a better identity. No wonder, we keep on saying we have no unity. The numbers, no matter how higher than the next candidate's votes only speak of the diversity of opinions. Since we are a democracy, the majority vote speaks, representing the better side of the whole. This commitment to the majority indeed raises the whole exercise into choosing for ourselves someone to lead us. The numbers thus only get to emphasize the division, not the communal action for the common good. So maybe, as soon as the votes speak, the announcer may need to say without fear and gladly: "We have a new President..." In this way, even those who voted for the other candidate gets to understand that now they must subdue their wills before the will of the majority.

This latter process becomes difficult with the thought of vote buying and coercion before or during the voting, and even during the canvassing! When the number of votes gets priority over the communal action of choosing our leaders, vote buying and coercion becomes a necessary medium. But if the emphasis is on our communal action for the common welfare, vote buying and coercion become really unacceptable behaviors, and we rise to a better feeling of belonging and responsibility.

We are no longer children with childish mentality or mind sets. We are responsible adults. A new way of thinking may be necessary in the process so that we can get the feeling of having achieved what we deeply long for inside us. God bless

Friday, May 18, 2007

Book & Journals at the PGCA Convention

This coming May 23, 2007 I shall be attending my 1st PGCA Annual Convention. This should be an exciting event, knowing that we have become members of this organization because of its being currently the Interim APO or accredited professional organization. I know there are some of us who would also want to take this chance of getting some materials for our use in the field. Hence, I have suggested to PACERS that we bring along some volumes of the Philippine Journal of Counseling Psychology (PJCP). Since I have some volumes of Dr. Vangie Aguilan's book on Multicultural Counseling, am also contemplating of bringing the copies here so that those who might want to work on the area can find in this resource the needed ideas. Dr. Vangie's book costs P300, while the PJCP has varied prices depending on the "recentness" of the volume. The older the cheaper. I think we also have a retail scheme on a bargain mode.

If you would like to inquire or buy any of these books, please feel free to reserve with me at any of my celphone numbers: (0919-6236605 [SMART]; or 0927-3842739 [GLOBE]). Or else feel free to email me at my two email addresses: or
It should be my joy to help you have these volumes for our ongoing education in Counseling.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

PACERS Visits Dr. Naomi Ruiz

The 7 in the picture are from the left going right (seated): Drs. Naomi Ruiz & Carmen Pabiton, both past Presidents of PACERS. Standing are Marichel (Dr. Ruiz's eldest daughter), myself, Director Joey of DLSU's Center for Counseling, Dr. Susan Estanislao & Dr. Ruiz's son Bobby. On this pic are the Tres Marias of PACERS: Dr. Naomi Ruiz at the center, Drs. Pabiton & Estanislao.

Dr. Ruiz was instrumental in my entry to PACERS. I remember her for inviting us to attend the PACERS Annual Convention in 1996 which was held at Robinson's Galleria, the theme of which was Megatrends in Counseling.
One Sunday two weeks ago, Dr. Irma Coronel texted Dr. Pabiton about Dr. Ruiz . Their house was burned down, and Dr. Ruiz brought NOTHING from their house except the dog that stays with her. Her husband and son Bobby were out at that time, and Dr. Ruiz was alone in the house with their helper. With the help of some men in the neighborhood, Dr. Ruiz was carried out of the burning house. And to think that their house wasn't insured! The visit was then apt because this lady, who's now into her late 70's (in two years she'll be starting the eighth decade of her life - guess her age!) has been our Chair at the Counseling & Educational Psychology Department of DLSU's College of Education. When I entered DLSU in 1995, she was then the Chair. She eventually taught me my first Counseling Techniques subject. The following year, she also taught me Family Therapy. Such ties still bind in me. I remember her for sharing with us that whenever she was pregnant, she got promoted. She was for me one person who witnessed the reality of Divine Providence.
During the visit, I also gathered that her first child, Marichel was a miracle baby. Dr. Naomi was married two years already and had no child yet. She was diagnosed having an infantile uterus. Faith came in, and her first baby was given. And the next deliveries were really painful because her first delivery was almost fatal due to the anaesthesia given her. Hence, deliveries without anaesthesia she underwent for the next child given them. Dr. Naomi once mentioned in the conversation that "I don't believe that sufferings should be taken out of our experience." She was one who experienced herself the wisdom of suffering: an occasion to show that God indeed takes over in our weakness. His will is really paramount. Wow! This visit has almost been a pilgrimage in faith to a woman who shown me the advantage of having a strong faith while serving others as a Counselor. Thanks a lot, Dr. Naomi for your motherly Christian sharing. May your long life be filled with joy and wisdom. Hope to see you during our Annual Convention next year. God bless

PACERS Planning 2007 Site

Let me place in here the site of our PACERS Planning held last May 4-5, 2007. The site is TALA Resort at Rizal, Laguna. Yes, the town of Rizal (not Jose Rizal's because he comes from Binan, Laguna) is located after San Pablo on the way to Nagcarlan where we went for Planning two years ago. The place is gorgeous. See the pool, and of course Mt. Makiling. This is one of the "perks" of being a PACERS Board member: getting to places I would normally not be able to go. If this is the reward for the service, thanks a lot. Enjoy the two pics then. God bless

Monday, May 07, 2007

Our IPCAP Petition

I wanted the following material downloaded as a picture, but when I was about to do that, the powerpoint format that it was sent me couldn't be downloaded. It looks like images downloadable here should be in jpeg format. Since I don't know how to convert to jpeg the scanned material imposed on the powerpoint slide Ms Malou Chavez sent me, I thought of just copying it here, complete with all those who signed it. Here it is:

March 17, 2007
We, the undersigned, fully endorse the extension of the Presidency of PGCA of Dr. ROSA MARIA LLANES for another term inclusive from May 2007 - 2009. We strongly believe that having been the lead person in the promotion, advocacy and implementation of RA9258, she has to finish the whole process of professionalizing the Guidance and Counseling profession. We are highly confident that she is the most competent person to fulfill this most important and noble endeavor for us Counselors & the whole nation.



Good Shepherd Sisters



CDAP President

CDAP Past President


University of San Agustin

PACERS President

Guidance Circle of the Philippines

San Agustin Center of Studies
St. Camillus College Seminary

Good Shepherd Congregation

Claret School of Quezon City
San Agustin Center of Studies

Be rest assured that as soon as I get hold of the jpeg format of this document, I shall immediately download it here so all may see the veracity of the above statement. We did this on our own account as participants who personally came on the above date in our ongoing formation of the integration organization for Professional Counselors.

PGCA Annual COnvention Site NEWS!

Since I have been receiving inquiries about developments regarding the PGCA Annual Convention site, here it is:

I called up Dr. Llanes' secretary Ms Janice Albano, and she conveyed to me that THERE IS NO CHANGE OF CONVENTION SITE. The PGCA Annual Convention scheduled on May 23-25 will TAKE PLACE AS SCHEDULED at Great Eastern Hotel along Quezon Avenue.

Barring any untoward incident, planned or unplanned, it should be a convenient site for our gathering. I talked with the President herself, Dr. Rosa Ma. Llanes, and she relayed to me that our site is not where the burning took place, which is the new building. Our site is at the old building, malawak daw ito, since she went there yesterday. Dr. Benny will even upgrade our site since we may have so many people coming who need to be accommodated.

I hope this piece of news will allay the fears of those among us who intend to attend the Convention. This shall be our way of indicating our ACTIVE MEMBERSHIP in PGCA where all Counselors shall be registered before taking the Board exams or filing for licensur under the Grandfather Clause of RA9258. Remember, PGCA is currently the INTERIM Accredited Professional Organization where we shall all be registered. Once the integration organization mandated in the law shall have been constituted and duly approved by the Board (PRBGC) and the PRC, then we shall be registering with that organization. Hope we attend this Convention and show our solidarity for each other, and help promote the profession we all have given our lives for all these years.

Please share this piece of news to those colleagues in the field whom you know. You may share this blog site too so they can read the pertinent documents I have downloaded in here for everyone to access.

God bless

Sunday, May 06, 2007

PGCA Annual Convention Site Burned

Last Thursday night, May 3, I kept awake until midnight just to catch up with the news about the burning of the Great Eastern Hotel (it used to be called Aberdeen Court as well). I immediately contactedn our President, and she mentioned going to see the site today or tomorrow, and when we meet on Sunday for the IPCAP Constitution drafting, the site should have been decided. One friend-colleague suggested that there be a change in site since it may not be good to have the Convention in the site that has burned. Please pray we find one immediately. Remember the Convention is scheduled on the 23rd-25th of May. We shall immediately inform you, including through this blog. Okey?

PACERS Activities for the year 2007-2008

Allow me to announce here the activities we have agreed for this year. We intend to hold our Midyear Workshops (at least 4) in Davao this coming September 6-7, 2007. The site might be Hotel Minseng (I hope my spelling is correct).

The PACERS 32nd Annual Convention next year is scheduled on Feb. 20-22, 2008. We usually start at 11AM for registration and have the Opening in the afternoon of the 1st day (Feb.20), and it will last until Friday afternoon, capped by the workshops on the third day. We are still to deliberate on the theme, and the site. We shall immediately inform you once we have laid down the theme and then the site. Keep updated. If you have suggested themes and workshop topics, please feel free to suggest so we can prepare them for you. Our email addresses have been mentioned in the previous blog.

Our monthly meetings, as I have written in my previous blog, shall be on the 4th Fridays of the month. You may submit your application for membership on the first week of the month so we can evaluate and deliberate on the monthly meeting. We should find it fast to contact you after the decision shall have been made on your application. It's our joy to be of service to you and the profession.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

PACERS Planning Project

During our PACERS Planning workshop, Fr. Ekku Bustamante, S.J., current Vice-President proposed that we tie up well with our members in the provinces. Especially in the light of the licensure, it is imperative that we do this. The usual practice we had was that they would come and attend either the Annual Convention or the Midyear Workshops where they would renew their membership or suibmit their applications for membership, after which they would go home and wait for the next chance to participate in the events prepared. The membership committee meanwhile evaluates the applications and then in the next Board meetings present the applications for approval. This appears to be quite accurate a description. Hence, it became a common stand that we tie up with our members in the provinces if only to strengthen the ties that bind us.

Fr. Ekkku and Dr. Susan Estanislao were tasked to prepare the program to be presented in the next Board meeting come June 22. Yes, by the way, our monthly meeting has been scheduled every fourth Friday of the month except for December when we shall have it on the 5th, and the month of February, there will be a pre-Annual Convention meeting on the 15th next year.

Meanwhile, I am planning to write those Counselors from my own region (primarily those in Tacloban) before I go home on June. Hopefully we can have more interactions then because during the Annual Convention we barely had time to get to know each other. And to think that they came even if the invitation letters I just asked the school guard to give to the Guidance Office. The idea is to get to familiarize with their situation and how PACERS can be of help to them. Hopefully, we can spark the local development of Counselors who can't come to Manila or in any of the Midyear Workshop sites through regional workshops. Oftentimes, as we have experienced in Bohol last year, the difficulty of organizing seminars in the provinces is due to ouyr lack of contacts. Hence, may this step lead towards that direction. Who knows, as we move towards specialization, we can spur tyhe active participation of local Counselors in the Board, much like the one we have currently, i.e., Fr. Ekku is from Zamboanga, while Dr. Ruffy Ramos III is based in Naga City of the Bicol region.

Yes, we intend as Board members to activate our Counselors in the place where we come from. The Chair, Dr. Julian Montano feels inspired to move towards this direction in his native area, Cavite. He can be contacted through his email; Dr. Susie, the Corporate Secretary would like to strengthen the Counselors in her area in San Pablo. Her contact email is Fr. Ekku can be contacted through his email address The rest of the Board, Dr. Susan Estanislao, Vice-Chair, Dr. Leo Capeding, our Executive Secretary, Ms Liza Suarez, our Treasurer, Dr. Ruffy Ramos III, our Auditor, and Dr. Benny Lascano, our Board Member I believe are very willing to help out in this direction. If you are interested in the project of organizing local P-groups, please contact us. PACERS would like to do this project with you.

If you have any ideas on this matter, you may email me at or Let's strengthen our Counselors so we can practice more competently and confidently. The ultimate beneficiaries of our services shall hopefully contribute to the enhancement of our social well-being. Amen.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

PACERS Annual Planning Workshop 2007

The Philippine Association for Counselor Education, Research & Supervision (PACERS) Board shall be having its Annual Planning starting tomorrow May 4-5, 2007 at a resort somewhere in Laguna. I haven't been there, so I will just reserve it for my next blog. Please pray for our safe trip and lively discussion so we can make this year another fruitful one for the updating of our Counselors and the enrichment of Counseling in the Philippines. God bless

PACERS Annual Planning Workshop

The Philippine Association for Counselor Education, Research & Supervision (PACERS) Board shall be having its Annual Planning starting tomorrow May 4-5, 2007 at a resort somewhere in Laguna. I haven't been there, so I will just reserve it for my next blog. Please pray for our safe trip and lively discussion so we can make this year another fruitful one for the updating of our Counselors and the enrichment of Counseling in the Philippines. God bless