The School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies (SDEAS) was awarded Outstanding Volunteer Organization for this year’s Search for Outstanding Volunteers (SOV) during an online award ceremony broadcast live on the Regional Development Council's Facebook page on Jan. 27.
To formally open the event, Atty. Romando S. Artes, the acting chairman of the MMDA and an NCR Regional Search Committee chair, gave his opening remarks. He proudly stated that volunteerism has been present throughout Philippine history. Many Filipino individuals and organizations constantly share their gifts and talents to aid the community, even during the pandemic. He then congratulated the awardees and praised their contributions to the organizations and the communities they served. “While we know that all of you choose to volunteer selflessly, and without expectation of being recognized or rewarded, today we wish to do just that.”
The host for the 2022 SOV Regional Awarding Ceremony, Ms. Ellaisa Badoy, proceeded to award the volunteers. SDEAS was awarded Outstanding Volunteer Organization for promoting equal access to opportunities and addressing the needs of Deaf students and professionals. “It ensures that Deaf heritage is preserved and Deaf culture is valued and nurtured.” Ms. Badoy also talked about how SDEAS has been implementing volunteer programs and activities for 14 years and established a program that allowed hearing participants to learn about Deaf culture, identity, and basic Filipino Sign Language.
After receiving the certificate of recognition, a representative and volunteer from SDEAS, Mr. William Sidayon Jr., gave a short message to the audience. He talked about how each individual has a social responsibility to learn and understand more about the Deaf and raise awareness about the importance of helping fellow Filipinos.
“Sa kabuoan po, ang De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies ay naglingkod po ng higit sa 30,217 hours na ginugol po ng mayroon 271 volunteers sa loob po ng labing-apat na taon,” he shared.
He credited SDEAS coordinators, formators, and their directors for being the reason the organization was successful. He also thanked those who have volunteered and helped SDEAS in their advocacies, including non-government organizations, associates, community partners, and institutional partners. He assured the audience that they would continue in their efforts for their advocacy through various projects in different parts of the country.
The SOV is a recognition program that aims to recognize the great volunteer activities provided by individuals, organizations, and local government units in strengthening communities and contributing to the country's overall development goals. To be awarded the Outstanding Volunteer Organization, an organization must have volunteered for at least five years. They should also be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency, or another officially recognized accrediting government entity; or be recognized as a volunteer group by the local government, local institution, or community receiving volunteer services.