Non-governmental organization Philippine Business for Social Progress provides a service called Safe Motherhood Caravans, which recently made a stop in Bago City. The program seeks to provide information on childcare and, at this event, a teenage mother recounted her experience raising a child at a young age,
“The worst experience was when my baby got sick,” said Rietchelyn Jalea, who was 18 years old when she had her first child. “It made me realize how hard it [was] to take care of a child.”
“I didn’t know what to do because I [was] a young mother and no one [was] there to guide me,” she added.
Originally from Siquijor, she moved to Bago City, her partner’s hometown.
Jalea credited the caravan program for helping her through the situation.
“I learned a lot about family planning,” she explained. “After the activity, I decided to get an implant so that I wouldn’t get pregnant yet; I still want to take better care of my child.”
According to a press release, around 13,000 women have been helped by the program, which has visited Bacolod City, Himamaylan City, and Kabankalan City.
“The good thing about the Safe Motherhood Caravan is that it really teaches women and mothers how to properly plan for a family,” said Angie Licañel, a nurse for the Bago City Health Office.
Participants also received free prenatal consultations, implant application, vitamins for their children, HIV testing, and other medical services./WDJ