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Sunday, December 7, 2008

"Art Haven" & The Rights of the Child

Art Haven* delighted hundreds of Baguio folk  last Saturday at the Country Club Multipurpose Hall with a variety of musical performances ranging from ballet to martial arts.

Running on the theme, "Celebrating the Rights of Every Child," the early Christmas show was not only meant to join the world in the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but also to support the "Hub of Hope," a Baguio-based organization which boasts of  a well-managed day care center and the country's "first breast milk bank."

The two-part program featured a one-act, two-scene story entitled "The Dream," and an assortment of other artistic performances.

"The Dream" is a moving story/ballet performance centering on the life of a gradeschooler named "Isabel" who lost her father and whose mother had to work abroad as a nurse. She was left to the care of a mean aunt who habitually maltreats the hapless girl physically and emotionally. Isabela eventually finds solace in a magical world of her dreams where she enjoys the company of the Queens of the Stars, Bluebirds, Butterflies and Snow, along with the hosts of creatures in their respective enchanted kingdoms. Isabel's paradise did not last long, however, for in that dream the "Witch and her Apprentices" ultimately wreak havoc on it.  Sometime later in the real world, Isabel's mother returns to rescue her daughter and indicts her sister for abusing her dainty child. Soldiers then march in to arrest the Evil Aunt, and a period of healing for the traumatized child transpires until the child is eventually revived and returned to her normal self.

Part Two showcased Taekwondo and Aikido demonstrations, piano/ballet performances, and flamenco and ballroom dances.


Parenthood, Children's Welfare. As I and my wife watched the the ballet performance, my thoughts turned to the tough call of parenthood and recalled not only how I and my wife have struggled hard to give our kids the best of what we have or could give, but also how we may have failed as parents.  I also thought of countless Filipinos toiling abroad and the social costs of the OFW phenomenon. I wondered how many thousands of children around the world have been scarred inside and out in ways few can truly imagine.  I also thought of  and felt grateful to dozens of organizations out there that have championed the welfare of children against all sorts of threats.


Martial Arts. I am biased for Jeet Kune Do, Wushu and Aikido so the Aikido demo naturally interested me more than  the Taekwondo demo did.  Not that one is essentially better than the other; it's just that one suits my taste better than the other. Anyways, I took the occasion to briefly explain to my wife the three main principles of aikido and the different moves of the martial artists on stage, like bolo diving, throwing techniques, and what not.  Well, my wife perhaps only half-listened out of respect for my need for an ego boost at that moment, for I was actually spoiling her enjoyment of the whose show with my unsolicited lecture haha.


Jameela Perez, Art Haven's Flamenco instructor, wowed the audience with her her flawless performance of three variations of the Flamenco dance -- Mosaico, Sevillanas, Arabe and España Cañi.  Among her schoolmates at UP Baguio who were part of the show are Maurice Almadrones, Mel Eulogio and Frances Loy.


*Art Haven is a "performing arts studio, cafe, art gallery, and events place." It offers the following classes: Taekwondo, Aikido, Piano and Voice, and Macrame and Art Jewelry.  Its Baguio office is at D Lopez Building, Assumption cor. Session Road, Baguio City.  Contact nos.: (074) 423 3244. Email:


Declaration of the Rights of the Child
(Plain Language Version)

All children have the right to what follows, no matter what their race, colour sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, or where they were born or who they were born to.

You have the special right to grow up and to develop physically and spiritually in a healthy and normal way, free and with dignity.

You have a right to a name and to be a member of a country.

You have a right to special care and protection and to good food, housing and medical services.

You have the right to special care if handicapped in any way.

You have the right to love and understanding, preferably from parents and family, but from the government where these cannot help.

You have the right to go to school for free, to play, and to have an equal chance to develop yourself and to learn to be responsible and useful.

Your parents have special responsibilities for your education and guidance.

You have the right always to be among the first to get help.

You have the right to be protected against cruel acts or exploitation, e.g. you shall not be obliged to do work which hinders your development both physically and mentally.

You should not work before a minimum age and never when that would hinder your health, and your moral and physical development.

You should be taught peace, understanding, tolerance and friendship among all people.

♥ From Original version here.

Full Text of Republic Act 9262 at this site.

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