A Blessing of Health


A pregnant Fatima Digaon- Pigkaulan anticipating the complation of Barangay Sadangen's health facility

Fatima Digaon-Pigkaulan, 20, enthusiastically anticipates the completion of the first medical center under construction at Barangay Sadangen in Camp Rajamuda.

She lives adjacent to the site of the Mindanao Trust Fund (MTF)-funded project administered by the World Bank to advance the peace process between the Philippine Government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Fatima considers this as a blessing. She hopes to deliver her first baby in May 2021 in the maternity ward of the facility expected to be completed in March 2021.

“When I heard about the plan to construct a health center nearby, I almost jumped out of joy. I told my husband that we do not need to go far when I give birth to our child,” said Fatima.

People with medical emergencies are usually rushed to the municipality of Buluan, about 45 minutes away from Sadangen. It costs PhP 80 (about USD 1.66) to hire a motorcycle to reach Buluan.

Fatima owns a sari-sari store while her husband is a farmer. They are also members of the People’s Organization (PO) called the Sadangen Farmer Pamana Marketing Cooperative. The PO is now the custodian of the Sadangen health station built under the Mindanao Trust Fund-Reconstruction and Development Project phase III (MTF-RDP/3).

As a member of the People’s Organization, her husband sometimes assists in the construction of the center, aware of and anticipating the benefits his pregnant wife and the rest of the community will reap once construction is finished.

MTF-RDP3 Implementing Partner the Community and Family Services International inspects construction
Newly built health facility of Barangay Sadangen

The PhP1.8 million-health project will also serve three or more remote barangays in General Salipada K. Pendatun (GSKP) municipality that also have little or no access to basic health facilities. Sadangen is one of the 19 barangays in the GSKP municipality.  

The facility in Sadangen will serve as a health center, a birthing clinic, and a pharmacy. This will be managed by a trained health worker who will facilitate consultation and treatment, and other programs of the Ministry of Health of the BARMM, such as immunization for measles, polio, and the provision of other health services.

“The health center will not only provide easy access to medical services but will also reduce the time and cost spent by the people in the communities,” said Kadafy Sinolinding, a Bangsamoro Development Agency (BDA) community development officer.

Sinolinding cited the Barangay Local Government Unit’s (BLGU) proposal to have the project site as an area of development where a government center would be built. The same area hosts a solar-powered water system built under the phase II of the MTF-RDP.

“The MTF-RDP has paved the way for the BLGU to have this development initiative,” he said. “Years from now, we foresee a changed and progressive Barangay Sadangen serving people from various communities.”

Adapted from Community and Family Services International (17 Feb. 2021). Health Center Brings Joy to Camp Rajamuda.  URL: https://cfsi.ph/health-center-brings-joy-to-camp-rajamuda/ (accessed on 06 June 2021)