We are blessed that we PWDs (persons with disabilities) and Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, Inc. (TWH), are under the mantel of the Catholic Church! We feel God’s love and care through the loving gestures and attention of the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and Antipolo Diocese. Our Founder, Sr. Valeriana Baerts, ICM who dedicated all her life in service to and uplifting the lives of majority of Filipino PWDs for their empowerment, represents the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary through its District Superior, Sr. Ma. Corazon Sastre, ICM. Even now that Sr. Valeriana has already passed away, we still feel her love and care through the Sisters. The Antipolo Diocese, spearheaded by Most Reverend Francisco De Leon, DD, Bishop and Parish Priest of the Antipolo Cathedral, inspires us through their loving generosity by leasing their property to us for free where TWH is located and stays on their property.
Developing PWDs for their inclusive growth and progress is a huge task and responsibility which is being shared with their noble thrust by the Sisters and the Diocese. We are forever grateful to the Sisters of Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Antipolo Diocese for being the instrument of God’s love as we find our self-worth and defy our physical disabilities!
The COVID-19 pandemic crisis has put us down but there are still many reasons to thank God as He is Almighty faithful and never to forsake us! God can never be outdone in generosity and He uses people as instruments to carry out His good works!
The present crisis has badly affected TWH with unexpected work stoppage which we had not prepared for. We commend the good efforts of the TWH BOT especially our President/CEO and EVP/COO who were able to implement operations for our medicine packaging and metalcraft livelihood workshops to provide work though limited and on rotational schedule for our majority of workers. But with God’s bountiful grace, we were assisted by kindhearted people who became instruments of His hope, providence and healing! For the first part of the community quarantine last March 2020, we were assisted by: Antipolo Diocese; Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary; Christ Commission Fellowship; Caritas Manila, Inc.; Hon. Mayor Keith Nieto; Direct Aid Program of the Australian Embassy; Tzu Chi Foundation Philippines; United Laboratories, Inc.; Cathay Drug Inc. (YSS); Asian Development Bank Staff Community Fund; Lopez Group Foundation; Tv 5 Network; Rustans Supermarket; SM Supermalls; St. Oscar Romero Quasi Parish; Catholic Relief Service (CRS); St. Camillus Health Center; Office of the Senator Grace Poe; Office of Senator Leila Delima; Brgy. Sto. Domingo Council (Janice Tacsagon-Curia); Nazh- Far Mariwa Berganio II; Jollibee Food Foundation; Business Maker Academy; Ms. Clarita Bayoda; Ms. Des Habungan; Ms. Cristy Redoble; Mrs. Araneta; Ms. Felice thru Ms. Licilina Castillo; Board Member Gongora; Mr. Robert & Ms. Linda May De Lara.
For the second part of the community quarantine this August 2020, God’s grace continued through the assistance of: Bestfriend Food Services; Sannovex Pharmaceuticals; Hon. Cong. Michael John Duavit; Tzu Chi Philippines; Philippine Red Cross – Rizal Chapter; Handyman; Monde MY San; Personal Outreach of Ms. Malou Navio (Unbound); GMA Kapuso Foundation; Hon. Sen. Ping Lacson.
We would also like to mention the kind assistance of ABS-CBN Pantawid Pag-ibig Program; Ateneo De Manila University (Kilos Kapwa Donation Drive – Christelle Juin R. Ancha); Bro. Gilbert Cruz; Cainta Catholic College; Carl Ranada; Dept. of Health (DOH); Fr. Bienvenido Miguel; Fr. Kirby (St. Oscar Romero Parish); Gentlemen’s Lounge; Inner Wheel Clubs of the Phil. Inc. (District 382 Inner Wheel Club of Manila 101); MediCard; Ms. Liezel Ode; Ms. Sally Romero; Ms. Tina Larrazabal – Cobys Restaurant; Pastor Danny Urquico; Rebisco Foundation, Inc.; Ross Glenn Gongora (Board Member); Shopping Center Management Corporation (SM Supermalls); Sir Intet Victoriano; Union Bank
We are in the process of working out and accepting other donations which we shall post for update and recognition. We are indeed very grateful to our donors and benefactors who sustained us to survive this pandemic crisis. Thank you so much to all of you and to God be the Glory!
Last April 14, 2019, the new TWH Board of Trustees were elected. They are: Mr. Felix Gonzalez Jr. as the President/Chief Executive Officer; Ms. Lita Evangelista as Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer; Ms. Virgie Montilla as Secretary/Board Member; Ms. Ria Pasno as Treasurer/Board Member; Mr. Raymon Gabriel as Board Member; Mr. Inocentes Victoriano as Board Member; Mr. Donald Liwanag as Board Member; Ms. Clarita Bayoda as Board Member; Ms. Nelia Ponce as Board Member; and Ms. Adeline Dumapong as Board Member.
The new TWH Board of Trustees have also organized themselves to form committees to better handle the TWH organization/operations through good governance, ethics & grievances, membership, legal, finance and other related important concerns deemed vital for our center. With the new TWH Board of Trustees, it is our goal to faithfully implement our mission vision.
by: Angel Villafuerte
A PWD father nearing his senior age, pedaling his bicycle all the way from Binangonan, Rizal just to get to work, patiently crossing every military checkpoint…..
A PWD mother, bread-winner, waking up very early in the morning to do house chores, tirelessly wheeling herself to work so she can send her son to school……
A PWD mother, facing the danger of the pandemic through diligently selling of fish balls along the street so she can feed and sustain her young children……
They are just few of our PWD warriors, vigilant to challenge the present COVID-19 pandemic crisis and finding ways to survive. We at TWH are always inspired of our PWD workers for their resiliency and resourcefulness holding on to faith and hope in God. This inspiration is precisely the reason why strong efforts were made to continue the operations of our medicine packaging and metalcraft livelihood workshops with the support/assistance of our partners.
While others resort to begging and doing various scams to survive, PWDs of TWH become warriors to find work. “Kailangan nating bumangon at magpatuloy!” These were the fighting words of our EVP/COO with her remarkable efforts to implement livelihood in TWH amidst the shattering and paralyzing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. We appeal to kind and generous people to further assist us through various means so we can continue and improve our livelihood.
by: Angel Villafuerte
This is an advocacy project in continuance to similar ones held in 2011, Access 2020: Adventure Race and in 2014 Access 2020: Race to Success. The theme for this present project, being the climax is PWDs’ Accessibility to Establishments, Education, Transportation, Livelihood and Employment. With the prelude activity this year, the highlight shall be main events next year.
Though the clamour of PWDs for equal rights and opportunities continues, we are grateful to the national government, institutions and some private entities for advocating the cause of PWDs. The 20% discount for PWDs’ basic needs and services is much appreciated together with universities/colleges pursuing education for PWDs as well as some private companies implementing the Accessibility Law for their establishments as well as employing PWDs in their working force. The quest continues to further strengthen this advocacy for the benefit of more PWDs. The quest likewise continues for PWDs’ more accessibility in the metropolis especially through wheelchair friendly establishments, streets and pavements as they go through their daily routine. Thus, fortifying and promoting Accessible Tourism.
Likewise, this project aims to achieve accessible transportation for PWDs to include them in the mass transit services as well as provide optimum transportation services in airlines and other modes of transportation in our society. Furthermore, this project emphasizes the accessibility to more scholarship assistance, livelihood and employment for PWDs. This project also aims to partner with government agencies, private companies and associations, disabled people’s organizations and civil societies for the accomplishment of objectives.
- To uplift the lives of PWDs in the Philippines.
- To include PWDs in community and social development especially through accessibility to establishments, education, transportation, livelihood, and employment.
- To create stronger voice for the rights of PWDs especially in the stronger implementation of PWD-laws as they achieve equal rights and opportunities.
- To advocate for the cause of PWDs as they become contributing members of the society.
- Prelude Activity 2019 (selling of tumblers, t-shirts, mugs)
- Main events by July 2020 (NDPR week in partnership with main partners & government agencies NCDA, DOT, DOTR, etc.)
- Route in the Metropolis (use of LRT/MRT; visit university belt & tourist spot; promoting accessibility, education & transportation)
- Airline service for PWDs (promoting airline services for PWDs)
- Entrepreneurship (promoting livelihood & employment with possibility of microfinance opportunity for PWDs)
- Wheelathon and Raffle at SM Supermall (SM East Ortigas grounds and activity center; December 2020, International Disability Day)
by Maricel Candole
This is the theme of the celebration as Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, Inc. (TWHI) turns 45. TWHI serves as a spring of empowered PWDs making a difference in their respective fields and communities. READ MORE…
by Sr. Pat Martinez, ICM
One of us has gone home to God’s eternal love, Sr. Valeriana Baerts, the last of our Belgian Sisters in the Philippines, and a Filipino citizen as well. Today also, the family of Sr. Valeriana and our ICM Sisters in Belgium, especially those who have been missioned to the Philippines, are one with us in prayer, remembrance, and affection. READ MORE…
by Angel Villafuerte
Empowerment houses for women and children with disabilities are the facilities involved in the pilot project for major renovation and concern for urgent change of asbestos roofing of TWH structures. Empowerment house 1 was sponsored by the Archdiocese of Manila through the Diocese of Antipolo while empowerment house 2 was sponsored by the Australian Embassy through its Direct Aid Program. READ MORE…
By Angel Villafuerte
Asian Development Bank- Staff Community Fund (ADB-SCF) assisted TWH mobility aid assistance program through project, Dignity Mobility: Wheelchair Assistance for PWDs. With the grant given, 60 PWDs benefitted for the project’s first and second parts with its timeframe for 2016 and 2017. We are very grateful to the ADB-SCF board for approving the project through the kindness of Ms. Christine Infantado, treasurer, Ms. Janette Pascual, chairman and Ms. Susan Ondoy, secretary. READ MORE…
By Angel Villafuerte
TWH is very proud of the performing arts by PWDs! The NCCA (National Commission for Culture and the Arts) assisted TWH last year for the project, Enhancement of Arts Program for PWDs which included the creation of cultural wheelchair dance and our choral group singing our OPM master pieces. READ MORE…
By Angel Villafuerte
‘One of life’s greatest battles is in knowing, embracing, and accepting one’s self, despite one’s flaws. For the residents of Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, the struggle gets all the more difficult. Self-portraits mirror the complexities of how one perceives the self. It is a defining experience that is so honest, yet so denuding, so delicate, yet so freeing. Richard Schmid puts it best: ‘Your experience of something, not the something itself, is the true underlying subject of every work you do.’ READ MORE…
By Maricel Candole
Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, Inc. in partnership with PAGCOR’s Bingo Department embarked in a fundraising activity dubbed as “Mobile Charity Bingo” last August 12, 2017, 3:00 p.m at TWH Multi-Purpose Covered Court. READ MORE….
Community Based Rehabilitation (CBR) to Community Based Inclusive Development (CBID) in Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, Inc. (TWHI)
By Maria Belen V. Untal
CBR is one of the Programs under social services of (TWHI). It is now called CBID to specify that Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) are also a part of societal development. It has been running in TWHI for 30 years now in different areas of Rizal. READ MORE…
By Michelle Fernandez
It was 2011 when Casa Bayanihan (CB), an alternative study abroad program of the University of San Francisco (USF) which was based in Ateneo de Manila University coordinated with Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, Inc. (TWHI) to be one of their Praxis community sites. It was a program that sends students from the US and Ateneo de Naga to different partner communities for four months to experience the realities of life especially those of the marginalized sector. The spirit of bayanihan shows the Filipino concept of helping each other without asking anything in return. READ MORE…