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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Re the May 13, 2009 GDAP Meeting

I have received the following questions from fellow Guidance Counselors, and here is my response:

Q: Is there a registration fee in attending the GDAP meeting? How long will the meeting be, half-day or whole day? Our Guidance Director (Carol) is on leave, that we might send a representative on her behalf; will that be okay?

A: There is no registration fee for this meeting. We will just have to help pay for snacks. The meeting will last for two hours: 9AM to 11AM.

Here is a comment from one of the respondents:

C: I could not file a leave as of today due to pressing institutional matters but I hope you still include me in future activities and notices.

A: Yes, we will keep everyone informed. People who are "in the know" about the practice of the profession will need to best update themselves on this matter. It's best if GDAP were there to help in this matter. I will do my part to help disseminate information on developments regarding this matter. I can only inform though through the following media: email, text messages, and, if I have a way other than, this blog. So stay connected. It's important that we help each other be updated on developments in our field.

Another Comment: Will be with you through my prayers and interest. Thanks a lot and regards.

C: Please update me of whatever information perusal to the organization and my involvement in the organization.

A: That's very nice of you. Thanks and yes, we'll keep you updated.

God bless

Monday, May 11, 2009

Invitation to form the Guidance Directors Association of the Philippines or GDAP

Herein is the letter of Dr. Elvira Irene G. Ramos to ALL GUIDANCE DIRECTORS all over the Philippines. Welcome are all PAST and CURRENT Guidance Directors, Guidance Coordinators whose task is that of a Guidance Director in any school or legitimate institution doing Guidance and Counseling. The meeting shall accept Guidance Directors and Coordinators with or without the license to do the job as Guidance Counselor. Please read along.

May 8, 2009



Peace greetings!

On May 13, 2009, Wednesday there will be a gathering of past and current Guidance Directors and Heads at 9:00am at the College of Education – Room 108, Philippine Normal University, Taft Ave., Manila.

The assembly aims to organize the Guidance Directors Association of the Philippines (GDAP). Though this association has been conceptualized some five years ago, this is the first time that we are formally organizing it as an association.

Aware of your leadership as a Guidance Director, it is our honor to invite you to this forthcoming activity so we can plan together worthy endeavors which we may adopt in the future.

Thank you and see you on May 13, 2009 at PNU, and let’s share a morning of camaraderie and togetherness.

Very truly yours,

Sgd. Dr. Elvira Irene G. Ramos

Something on Health Psychology

Let me post here something very much relevant from the vantage point of Health Psychology. People nowadays are very conscious about their health. In fact, there is a big billboard saying "Flat (stomach) is in!" I am just lucky that mine is. So, am I in? Or is my stomach in - to be more politically accurate? Yes, because I am not my stomach. Nonetheless, many today think that they are their health.

The Chart is difficult to place here; hence, let me just place the contents in paragraph form. I'd like to invoke a grammatical license for the following materials:

Apples - Protects your heart, prevents constipation, Blocks diarrhea, Improves lung capacity, and Cushions joints;

Apricots - Combats cancer, Controls blood pressure, Saves your eyesight, Shields against Alzheimer's, and Slows the aging process;

Artichokes - Aids digestion, Lowers cholesterol, Protects your heart, Stabilizes blood sugar, and Guards against liver disease;

Avocados - Battles diabetes, Lowers cholesterol, Helps stop strokes, Controls blood pressure, and promotes Smooth skin;

Bananas - Protects your heart, Quiets a cough, Strengthens bones, Controls blood pressure and Blocks diarrhea;

Beans - Prevents constipation, Helps hemorrhoids, Lowers cholesterol, Combats cancer and Stabilizes blood sugar;

Beets - Controls blood pressure, Combats cancer, Strengthens bones, Protects your heart, Aids weight loss;

Blueberries - Combats cancer, Protects your heart, Stabilizes blood sugar, Boosts memory, Prevents constipation;

Broccoli - Strengthens bones, Saves eyesight, Combats cancer, Protects your heart, and Controls blood pressure;

Cabbage - Combats cancer, Prevents constipation, Promotes weight loss, Protects your heart, Helps hemorrhoids;

Cantaloupe - Saves eyesight, Controls blood pressure, Lowers cholesterol, Combats cancer, Supports immune system;

Carrots - Saves eyesight, Protects your heart, Prevents constipation, Combats cancer and Promotes weight loss;

Cauliflower - Protects against Prostate Cancer - Combats Breast Cancer, Strengthens bones, Banishes bruises, Guards against heart disease;

Cherries- Protects your heart, Combats Cancer, Ends insomnia, Slows aging process, Shields against Alzheimer's;

Chestnuts - Promotes weight loss, Protects your heart, Lowers cholesterol, Combats Cancer, Controls blood pressure,

Chili peppers - Aids digestion, Soothes sore throat, Clears sinuses, Combats Cancer, Boosts immune system;

Figs - Promotes weight loss, Helps stops strokes, Lowers cholesterol, Combats Cancer, Controls blood pressure;

Fish - Protects your heart, Boosts memory,
Protects your heart, Combats Cancer, Supports immune system;

Flax - Aids digestion, Battles diabetes,
Protects your heart, Improves mental health, Boosts immune system;

Garlic - Lowers cholesterol, Controls blood pressure, Combats cancer, kills bacteria, Fights fungus;

Grapefruit - Protects against heart attacks,
Promotes Weight loss, Helps stops strokes, Combats Prostate Cancer, Lowers cholesterol;

Grapes - saves eyesight, Conquers kidney stones, Combats cancer, Enhances blood flow, Protects your heart;

Green tea - Combats cancer, Protects your heart, Helps stops strokes, Promotes Weight loss, Kills bacteria;

Honey - Heals wounds, Aids digestion,
Guards against ulcers, Increases energy, Fights allergies;

Lemon - Combats cancer, Protects your heart,
Controls blood pressure, Smoothes skin, Stops scurvy;

Lime - Combats cancer, Protects your heart,
Controls blood pressure, Smoothes skin, Stops scurvy;

Mangoes - Combats cancer, Boosts memory,
Regulates thyroid, aids digestion, Shields against Alzheimer's;

Mushrooms - Controls blood pressure, Lowers cholesterol, Kills bacteria, Combats cancer, Strengthens bones;

Oats - Lowers cholesterol, Combats cancer,
Battles diabetes, prevents constipation, Smoothes skin;

Olive oil - Protects your heart, Promotes Weight loss, Combats cancer, Battles diabetes, Smoothes skin;

Onions - Reduce risk of heart attack,
Combats cancer, Kills bacteria, Lowers cholesterol, Fights fungus;

Oranges - Supports immune systems, Combats cancer, Protects your heart, Straightens respiration;

Peaches - prevents constipation, Combats cancer, Helps stops strokes, aids digestion, Helps hemorrhoids;

Peanuts - Protects against heart disease,
Promotes Weight loss, Combats Prostate Cancer, Lowers cholesterol, Aggravates Diverticulitis;

Pineapple - Strengthens bones, Relieves colds, Aids digestion, Dissolves warts, Blocks diarrhea;

Prunes - Slows aging process, prevents constipation, boosts memory, Lowers cholesterol, Protects against heart disease;

Rice - Protects your heart, Battles diabetes,
Conquers kidney stones, Combats cancer, Helps stops strokes;

Strawberries - Combats cancer, Protects your heart, boosts memory, Calms stress;

Sweet potatoes - Saves your eyesight, Lifts mood, Combats cancer, Strengthens bones;

Tomatoes - Protects prostate, Combats cancer,
Lowers cholesterol, Protects your heart;

Walnuts - Lowers cholesterol, Combats cancer,
boosts memory, Lifts mood, Protects against heart disease;

Water - Promotes Weight loss, Combats cancer,
Conquers kidney stones, Smoothes skin;

Watermelon - Protects prostate, Promotes Weight loss, Lowers cholesterol, Helps stops strokes, Controls blood pressure;

Wheat germ - Combats Colon Cancer, prevents constipation, Lowers cholesterol, Helps stops strokes, improves digestion;

What Bran - Combats Colon Cancer, prevents constipation, Lowers cholesterol, Helps stops strokes, improves digestion;

Yogurt - Guards against ulcers, Strengthens bones, Lowers cholesterol, Supports immune systems, Aids digestion.

7 don'ts after a meal
* Don't smoke-Experiment from experts proves that smoking a cigarette after meal is comparable to smoking 10 cigarettes (chances of cancer is higher).

* Don't eat fruits immediately - Immediately eating fruits after meals will cause stomach to be bloated with air. Therefore take fruit 1-2 hr after meal or 1 hr before meal.

* Don't drink tea - Because tea leaves contain a high content of acid. This substance will cause the Protein content in the food we consume to be hardened thus difficult to digest.

* Don't loosen your belt - Loosening the belt after a meal will easily cause the intestine to be twisted &blocked.

* Don't bathe - Bathing will cause the increase of blood flow to the hands, legs & body thus the amount of blood around the stomach will therefore decrease. This will weaken the digestive system in our stomach.

* Don't walk about - People always say that after a meal walk a hundred steps and you will live till 99. In actual fact this is not true. Walking will cause the digestive system to be unable to absorb the nutrition from the food we intake.

* Don't sleep immediately - The food we intake will not be able to digest properly. Thus will lead to gastric & infection in our intestine.



Kaya nga iblinog ko na dito so more can know about it.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Padre de Familya: A Film Review

Coming out from the men's comfort room after watching the movie Padre de Familya, I overheard one father blurt audibly "Walang moral lesson yun a!" Really? I thought the film was simply showing us the truth of Philippine society today. If that father in the comfort room was right, feelings of disappointment were definitely disturbing.

Sunday night, May 3, I went to SM San Lazaro to catch the last full showing of the movie Padre de Familya after missing it on its opening day last April 29. Thankful for seeing it advertised in the papers as showing in SM theatres, I immediately drove to the mall, and caught it right on time when the film title was on screen.

It shows the typical Filipino family: at table and praying Grace Before Meals. The father notes that the youngest daughter was holding the fork while not concentrating on the prayer. The usual sermon at table by the father: is that what we your parents have been teaching you all these years? Don't be like the rest of your friends who have forgotten God.

The father works as an inspector general at the municipal hall in the town of San Felipe. Regular and caring a father, he sends his two children, the older one a son, and the youngest, a daughter to the tricycle terminal on their way to school. The son asks his father to buy him a computer. He is graduating from college, and while he goes to his friends to do his computer lessons and assignments, he feels distracted and is afraid he may not pass some of his subjects. The father assures him that in time it should come. He then reaches the flag ceremony (Monday morning) of the municipal hall employees as the lady mayor blurts her heart out in typical uneducated English (for comic satiric effect!) about accusations of her corrupt activities related to the garbage dump. The office scene shows one lady employee selling half a pack of Philip Morris to another fellow employee who promises to pay when the salary comes. Soon lunch time comes, and a messenger from a company that has been closed due to its failure to keep the sanitation standards comes and attempts to bribe the sanitation officer. The scene ends with him telling his briber - while fellow employees watch: "Hindi ako tumatanggap ng suhol." This scene elicited in me a gasp of hope: thank God we have such an employee who is strong enough to say No to bribery.

His older daughter stays home with the mother caring for a young child (which towards the end of the film is identified as this daughter's daughter, product of teenage pregnancy) and doing the house chores under the watchful supervision of the mother. Then they all go shopping, with the supermarket scene ending with the mother snatching a box of cereals, placing it in the midst of her legs covered by the long skirt she was wearing. What they wanted to buy had amounted beyond the available money, hence giving the impression that indeed, the poor who can't afford are forced to do some "diskarte" if only to make ends meet.

Then comes the couple scene: the wife is complaining that her husband's sister in-law came during the day and asking for help for her husband who's on dialysis. (This makes me say to myself: kung sino pa ang walang pera, siya pa ang may maraming sakit na mahal gamutin!) While he gives his wife part of his salary, he hides under the image of Santo Ninio some amount (which will be shown in a later scene as reserved fund for his brother's dialysis fees.)

Then comes the scene where the only son is in the classroom taking a computerized exams. After the teacher leaves the room, one student takes the opportunity to cheat: asking everyone around for the answer. The son in this film gives out NO answer, and soon the next scene shows his classmate making him trip as he walks from the exams room with a classmate. This son is trying to be a man of principle, but his environment is filled with people who don't have principles, friends who have irrational views of life (including believing in chain text messages), maintaining self-defeating attitudes toward life's challenges (like: the mayor is a difficult enemy to fight, that the mayor earns more by kick-back despite the fact that she's filthy rich!, and that the higher the ladder goes, the higher the jueteng pay). He could only say against his friends: "The government may be filled with cheats and plunderers, but my father is NOT like them!"

The family is religious, with everyone hearing Mass together and spending time in the park. While the couple talks about their economic difficulties, the children are playing around. In the previous scene, the son gets mad at his father's wrong priority (giving money for his brother's dialysis treatment while having none for his new computer), and the father slapping his son, admittedly out of parental imposition of power on the son. The father knows his mistake, but he too is caught being the only one who seems capable of helping out with his brother's dialysis treatment. Then the rain comes, they huddle around a very tiny umbrella, laughing and frolicking as they get wet. This seems to be the film's way of saying that in the Filipino setting, conflicts are tided over when troubles come and challenge the family.

To make up for his son's need for a new computer, the father canvasses with a computer store for the specified unit, but it costs more than he can afford. Resolved that he will succumb to the bribery offer, he calls the computer store and have the unit delivered, cash on delivery basis. He then arranges for a meeting with the briber, but eventually gets caught in Imbestigador style: restaurant scene where the bribery takes place, marked money, policemen, and televised! Shame on the whole family descends, giving the son pressure in the school, making the man's family deliberate on whom to seek help from: former general-friends, this or that padrino, the saints, the Blessed Virgin Mary. As he leaves his office, he carries along a folder filled with evidence of the mayor's underhanded corrupt activities. None of his co-employees even says goodbye to him. He loses the chance to get his benefits as his case drags in the court.

The son then makes his move: to find a way to expose the big fish, only to end up being caught having the mobile unit of the mayor's aide. With two friends, he planned to snatch the mayor's aide's mobile phone where evidence of anomalous transactions were supposedly aplenty.

His father confronts his son, and ends up showing him the evidence. The son contacts the media, but the father doesn't show up. He chooses to go to his lady mayor-employer whose father is in-charge of underground activities. This powerful padrino promises to let the case just rot in the court files while he The distraught son and the lady interviewer end up waiting in vain for the father's cold feet.

The film ends with the son graduating, and everyone in the family dressed to the ninths, sign of the father's new connections and unspeakable doubtful employment that gives the family the edge to make ends meet unabatedly. They still pray their Grace Before Meals, but in a new house. The last scene is poignant: the son's eyes caught in the picture-taking scene.


It's a heavy film showing something about corruption in our midst. We know it is happening, but all we do is talk about it. Like the son, some of us may really find ways to overthrow it, but we end up victims of our own carelessness.

I just hope as Counselors we do none of these things. Would that those who have been doing monkey business be given their days in jail. Would that when we have the evidence, we bring it out into the open even if it would mean we will have to be scrutinized ourselves. But like the father in the film: are we that ready to sacrifice the greater needs of those who depend on us when we will have to end up like Jun Lozada - in jail?

Is there a way out of this web of corruption? The film tries to offer some solutions: gradual improvement; catching the one who does the wrong. But this begs the question: why can't the big fish be caught?

The family remains to be what we have as a Filipino. It is a living proof that God loves us. But are we willing to continue feeding our families with money earned the wrong way? If we do so, then we reap the whirlwind: a cycle of corruption that we are too scared to confront because we might ourselves be tainted. HAAH!!!

Saturday, May 02, 2009


Herein is the letter from FPCAP inviting us to its 2nd Enrichment Seminar. Please read along.

Dear Members, Friends, Colleagues ,Fellow Workers in Family and Pastoral Ministry and Participants,

We are pleased to inform you of our resource speakers for the SECOND ENRICHMENT SEMINAR '09 who will explore with you the very relevant topics we have lined up for you:

May 4-Monday: PASTOR PERCY S.A. CRUZ "Paraprofessional Helping Skills & Strategies"- intended for those who are involved in parish and community work that do not have academic preparation and training in basic counseling. This seminar will highlight helping skills and strategies needed by a neophyte pastoral or community worker.

"Family & Social Support Systems in Counseling"- presents the whole gamut of the social support systems affecting the family in counseling.

May 6-Wednesday: PASTOR PERCY S.A. CRUZ
"Pastoral Helping Relationships" - is for pastoral workers to examine the dynamics of pastoral helping relationships.

May 7-Thursday: MS. JOJI O. RACELIS
"Family Systems & Theory Application in Counseling"- deals with the family system theories and its various applications in counseling.

"Psychological Issues in Marital Spirituality"- will present the Marital Spirituality espoused in Marriage Encounter and identify the Psychological Issues involved in developing the desired Marital Spirituality.

May 9-Saturday: MR. ELMERANDO T. MORES
"Program Development for Special Groups"- intended for those who are interested in developing various program and services for special groups (youth, parent, couple, parish worker, yaya/household helpers, etc.).

If you have been unable to register, you are WELCOME to just show up on the days that you choose to attend. We look forward to having you with us.

Yours truly,
Maureen N. Sandejas
Program Committee chair