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DOLE culminates 2015 Government Internship Program with painting contest
Wed, Feb 10, 2016 (Source: ZCFO)
To give twist to the usual ceremonial graduation activity, the DOLE Zamboanga City Field Office on January 28, 2016 culminated the 2015 Government Internship Program (GIP)with a painting contest at the Executive Lounge of Grand Astoria Hotel, Mayor Jaldon St., Zamboanga City. Participated by 32 completers, the painting contest,anchored on the 2015 Labor Day theme “Disenteng Trabaho at Kabuhayan, Alay Natin sa Bayan”, wasaimed atexacting the feelings and insights of the graduates about the program.

In his welcome message, Engr. Wesley D. Tan, head of DOLE-ZCFO said that the GIP is a Game changer, a DOLE initiative to help young members of the labor force gain experience in government work. He also said that it’s an Investment of the government, with millions of pesos allocated for its implementation. He said that with a total employment of seventy-two (72) interns, 60 of whom completed the 3-6 months program, and twelve (12) who served as substitutes, the GIP has taught the interns to invest in relationships and to work in the spirit of family and public service.

He further articulated that the program is a test of perseverance and pursuit of excellence, an opportunity for interns to develop their potentials and professionalism in the bureaucracy. Moreover, he said that the output of the contest shall be considered DOLE’s property and displayed at its office.

To guide the participants for the contest proper, Mr. Nelbert Anino, Project Supervisor of Theo’s Builders in Zamboanga City then briefed them on the basics of painting. A total of six (6) groups were formed and tasked to come up with a painting. Though neophytes, the groups enthusiastically undertook the endeavor and came up with paintings after the 2-hour period.

Mr. Anino, who also served as the judge,explained that although painting is subjective in nature as it reflects the thoughts and feelings of the painter, experienced artist like him can, from a glance determine the painter’s sentiment. In the end, the group from the Office of Cong. Lobregat was declared winner, with the group from COMELEC, and the combined group of the City Land and Housing Management Unit and POEA as second and third place, respectively.

Present during the ceremony were City Councilor Benjamin “BG” Guingona IV and former city councilor, Reynerio Candido.

Thereafter, Engr. Tan presented the sixty (60) interns who completed the program in various local and regional line agencies in the city to DOLE Regional Director, Sisinio B. Cano, who in turn declared them graduates.

In his message, RD Cano acknowledged the partner agencies for their support to the program, and for patiently guiding the interns in the way of public service. To the completers, he stressed that the GIP was a way of providing fresh college graduates with the opportunity to work for the government, and experience first-hand, how it functions in the delivery of programs and services to the public.

Further, he said that the GIP served as an instrument for participants to let go of their false impression about government service, and has afforded them a renewed view on how to deliver better service to the people, and help make a difference once they join government service.

Moreover, Atty. Stephen Roy Cañete, Election Officer for District I testified how the GIP contributed to the achievement of his Office’s target in 2015. He relayed that prior to the deployment of the interns, the Office was manned by a mere six (6) election assistants tasked to ensure that all 213, 000 voters validated their registration. At the rate they were going then, his personnel has braved themselves to work beyond the regular schedule in order to cover more than their individual target of 20, 000 voters.

On one fateful day during a TV guesting, Atty. Cañete said he chanced upon the honorable congressman, Celso L. Lobregat who promised to recommend the deployment of interns to the COMELEC. After the May 1, 2015 oath-taking, the COMELEC’s 2 District Offices in Zamboanga City gladly welcomed ten (10) interns who were immediately put to task to assist in the validation of voters’ records.

What seemed to be a nightmare to COMELEC at the start of the validation period eventually turned out to be a smooth-sailing process. Atty. Cañete thank all interns under his supervision for the professionalism they have displayed while deployed with his Office, working overtime just as his regular staff. He also expressed his gratitude to DOLE for taking them as a program partner and wittingly mentioned that they will be more than glad in welcoming the new batch of interns.

In addition, Mr. Francisco Barredo from the office of Cong. Lobregat related how hard the 1st Congressional District Office worked to ensure that budget is allocated for the gainful employment of the young. Some interns are now gainfully employed by the LGU of Zamboanga City while a few others have been recommended for casual employment with COMELEC. He further declared that a bigger allocation is provided for 2016’s batch of new interns.

Several interns relayed their experiences while working under the program, with a few saying that more than the wages they received, they have developed self-confidence and professionalism.

In closing, Ms. Ma. Elena T. Alabata, OIC of the DOLE’s Technical Services and Support Division mentioned that the GIP has provided the interns not just monetary benefits but also prepared the way for their formal employment. It was also a way for the government to scout potential employees for government service.

Lastly, she lauded the initiative of DOLE-ZCFO for coming up with the painting contest as a unique graduation activity, an opportunity for participants to further unleash their talents.

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