“Hugpong Mapatagnons OFCI” Gets Organized

SERVING as a “Unit” under the Antique Subchapter of Overseas Filipino Council International (OFCI Antique), “Hugpong Mapatagnons OFCI” got officially organized October 9, 2016 in Barangay Mapatag, Hamtic, Antique, Philippines.

The idea came about after OFCI Antique went through an Evaluation Process by a Professional Community Organizer, Ms. Maria Fe “Peng” Resol, last June. With quite a number of projects implemented one after another within a span of a few months since the time of establishment, the need to gauge, whether or not the members are ideally benefiting, was felt.

As part of the long process of getting the members initiate the formation of a group which they can call their very own, OFCI EB Members Joefel Resol and Edelmira Onifa went on home visitation.

As part of the long process of getting the members initiate the formation of a group which they can call their very own, OFCI EB Members Joefel Resol and Edelmira Onifa went on home visitation mid-September 2016.

OFCI Antique got established in Mapatag in May 24, 2014. A story announcing its birth can be read here.

As founder, having been a member of the mother organization, the OFCI, Inc., based in Washington State, U.S.A., as early as the mid-2000, I readily attached my personal projects to the group, like the non-interest loaning program, scholarship, feeding through Anita’s Kitchen, environmental concerns, assistance to health-challenged individuals, livestock, fishing and many more. These projects have regularly been showcased via the OFCI Antique Facebook Group which I created on the same day the group got organized. I have also used this blog to highlight quite a number of activities and projects of the association.

One of the projects is a weekly feeding which started on the first Saturday after OFCI Antique got organized in May 24, 2014.

One of the projects is a weekly feeding which started on the first Saturday after OFCI Antique got organized in May 24, 2014.

Echoing my concern over some members’ waning of interest mid-way through its second year of existence, some members of the Executive Board (EB) of OFCI Antique, honestly offered their observation and it eventually pointed to my obvious “monopoly” of the organization. Despite my physical absence, I have used the modern info tech to introduce the many projects and was merely giving instructions to the officers on a regular basis. The members didn’t have any say on any of the projects so there was no feeling of “ownership” by them. And this was clearly revealed by the Evaluation Report of Ms. Resol.

Brainstorming among the members as facilitated by Joefel Resol, still part of the long process of finally coming up with an organization which provides autonomy to local residents but not deviating from the mission and vision of OFCI.

Brainstorming among the members, as facilitated by Mr. Resol, was still part of the long process of coming up with an organization which allows full autonomy to local residents, but not deviating from the mission and vision of OFCI. This was held at the OFCI Multipurpose Center.

Main recommendation by the Evaluation was to allow the members to be the main decision makers and players of the projects or programs that they will embark on. The members, themselves, should formulate ways and means to have OFCI’s mission and vision actualized and will now cease to be under the mercy of the founder.

The new group underwent quite a process, patiently supervised, on the ground, by one OFCI Antique EB Member Joefel Resol, and is now considered to be the very first unit under the OFCI Antique Subchapter. More units are expected to get organized and this will most likely be after the “Hugpong Mapatagnons OFCI” is done with its registration at the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). As soon as it becomes legit, it can avail of the assistance of the government and will no longer be dependent on the founder’s financial help.

A few of the members attending the organizational meeting last October 9, 2016, with two visitors shown at the very end, coming with Mr. Resol from Pototan, Iloilo, as community organization trainees.

A few of the members attending the organizational meeting last October 9, 2016, with two visitors shown at the very end, coming with Mr. Resol from Pototan, Iloilo, as community organization trainees.

The officers are as follows: Sherry Francin S. Naig, President; Edelmira M. Onifa, Vice President; Maereeynell O. Mabaquiao, Secretary; Evelyn A. Onifa, Treasurer; and Rona S. Loresto, Auditor.

Meanwhile, OFCI Antique Subchapter will act as the lead and supervising organization, for the whole Province of Antique, of the other units which will later be established. One of the main concerns emphasized by Mr. Resol is for the local officers to become eventual leaders capable of organizing future units.

About Author

Freda Editha O. Contreras
Writing is a God-given talent which I try to utilize the good way. I used it as a means to earn a living, my very first job after graduating from college, when I got hired as an Information Writer by the Provincial Government of Antique through Governor Enrique A. Zaldivar in January 1982. By profession, I am a Registered Nurse, and was only able to practice it when I got recruited to work in a private hospital in Kuwait. This was in November 1987 and since then I have been living in Kuwait, now retired since June 2002. Because of my knack in writing I got hired in 1994 to write for Kuwait Times and later became an Editor of 'Pinoy News' a weekly supplement of KT. In March 1996 I published the very first independent Filipino newspaper in Kuwait and the Gulf bannered as Pinoy Expat News or PEN. The paper lasted for only 10 weekly issues. This was followed by another publication and came out first as an insert of an ad paper and later as a separate tabloid. I used then 'Pinoy News' as it was my idea the first time it was used for Kuwait Times. This again failed and produced only three weekly issues. I then turned to the Internet and in 1999 I got hired as a Contributing Editor of Suite101.com, a writers' portal on the web. The last of my articles was published December 31, 2002 but my topic 'Overseas Filipino Workers' was still visible until January 2006. All the 38 articles I wrote have been compiled into a book which I published in August 2007. I discovered blogging in 2006 but was not really serious about my writing. I wrote according to my whim. Having this blog under my own domain name is now a welcome development and I plan to concentrate again in writing. As is commonly said: "A writer will always be a writer." http://fredacontreras.com/

2 Comments

  1. Freda Editha O. Contreras (Post author)

    My appreciation Fe for finding time to comment. I think it is high time also for you to organize an OFCI Subchapter or Unit in your local community in the Philippines. But better yet if you can form OFCI Korea Chapter 🙂 You are, yourself, involved in helping poor communities in our Inang Bayan and in fact OFCI Antique received help from your group for two of our scholars last year. I thank you for your facilitation of it and hope that next year you will again be able to help send poor students to school. Good bless.

  2. Fe Gimarino-Kim

    Freda, congratulations.. you did a great job. May the Lord God giving you a long life to do your mission helping less fortunate Filipino people in your province. More power and God Bless You Always.

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