Dr. Ricardo Fernando.†

An iinfectious virus that makes you dream that your bigger than yourself and that you can do a lot to help your fellow man.

Me and Dr. Raffy Borromeo of the Pediatric Dentistry Center showing the kids the proper way to brush teeth.

Camper Jules with Dr. Richard Elwyn Fernando of the Institute for Studies in Diabetes.

Rainbow Camp Director Dr. Elizabeth Ann Catindig and Nurse Leyden Florido

Warly Ilano of Nueva Ecija

Enjoying a break after reaching the top of the mountain.†

My most enjoyable camp where long lasting friendships were forged and lives entwined to provide the inspiration for future projects.

Sr. Digna Dacanay.† GODís messenger

Mallou Tolentino with fellow camper Rowena Cambosa

Ms. Pitussia Talastas (lower right corner) with Ms. Salve Nodalo, Mr. Micu Amarillo and Nora Austria during the Juvenile Diabetes Foundationís Christmas party in 2007.† (Sorry for the wrong date on the picture.)

 

Ms Pitussia Talastas went on to become a teacher at several institutions in Metro Manila teaching English to foreign students.

Information provided by
Ed Ofilada, DDM
Project Coordinator for POHJD

Rm 233 Medical Arts Bldg.† St. Luke's Medical Center.

279 E. Rodriguez Sr. Blvd. 1103 Quezon City Philippines

Rainbow camp batch Ď98

mini reunion at the Institute for Studies in Diabetes

 

 

Office Phone:††††† (632) 723Ė 0101 loc 6233

Cellphone:†††††††††† (632) 09081662426

Email address:††† eofilada@yahoo.com

Zsa zsa Bautista, a batch Ď98 camper now a volunteer nurse in Camp 2010 and me.

Rainbow camp batch 2010

At Jardin ni Lola, Mabiga, Hermosa, Bataan

Project: Oral Health for Juvenile Diabetics

Addressing the oral health needs of type I diabetics in the Philippines since 1998

About Us

Project Balik-Eskwela had an unexpected benefit.† It encourage another diabetic named Pitusia Talastas to seek funds for her college education.† Unfortunately, I didnít have anymore funds to support her.† She searched for it extensively, looking in every nook and cranny for anyone who might be interested to support her.† She sort of felt I let her down which resulted in a† flaw in our relationship.† To remedy I decided to invite her diabetic friends and attend her graduation without her knowing about it.† When her name was called, we made such a great ruckus that her relatives were at a loss as to who was making all the commotion. All was forgiven and we celebrated afterwards.

In 2005, Ms Divina Aban, a 25 year old Chemotherapy patient suffering from Acute Myelogenous Leukemia became the second beneficiary of POHCC.† She was referred by the St. Lukeís Medical Center Social Service Department.† Although she was above the age limit of 19 which we set for the beneficiaries, it was decided to include her in the project as the cost of chemotherapy alone sill strain their financial resources.

Currently, the funds donated by the JASH Ressei Committee has been used up but the projects are still ongoing.† For those who may wish to share whatever resources they may have to allow these projects to continue, you may find our contact details below.

Project Oral Health for Juvenile Diabetics (POHJD) begun in June of 1997 when funding for the project was received from the JASH Ressei Committee in Japan through the Society of the Sacred Heart Philippine District.

The idea for the project was an offshoot of a research effort of which I became a part of.† Like most professionals inducted into a new profession, I wanted to do something to establish myself.† I was given a chance to become part of a research funded by the World Health Organization under Dr. Susan Yanga-Mabunga to study the prevalence of periodontal disease in juvenile diabetics in the Philippines.† My selfish intentions for joining the project was to put my name in an international journal.

At that time I was already giving lectures to doctors, nurses and dietitians about the oral health of juvenile diabetics on the invitation of Dr. Ricardo Fernando of the University of the East-Institute for Studies in Diabetes. This was followed by other requests from the Association of Diabetes Nurse Educators of the Philippines.† It was also about this time that I was first invited to participate in a Summer camp for Juvenile Diabetics.

After gathering the data for the study, I was eager to see my name in print Until I got unexpected visits from the patients whose mouth we examined for the study.† I wasnít prepared for these.† I realized that I might have stirred a hornets nest by participating in the study.† It dawned upon me that there is a whole population now that previously was just a thought in my mind but now is a living being infront of me requiring dental treatment and their needs will require a large sum of money.†

I tried writing to politicians to ask for funding to treat the diabetic children.† My efforts were met with polite refusals.† Until one day I happen to have a nun in the dental chair in my office.† She comes form a different breed of nuns.† Her name was Sr. Digna.† The congregation she comes from does not wear the usual habit of nuns.† Instead they seem to be working undercover, blending with the common tao, wearing simple clothes that most people wear.† They have a penchant for going to places that are difficult.† Places like Samar, one of the poorest province in the Philippines where insurgency is still a problem.

Sr. Digna suggested to me that I write to The JASH Ressei Committee in Japan to ask for funding for my project.† I couldnít believe it.† In no time at all they responded.† Asking in a very brief business-like letter ďWhatís your bank, bank account number and do you want it in dollars or yen?Ē†

In June of 1997 I got the money to fund my project. I was thinking of putting up a non-stock, non-profit†† organization that I will register at the security and exchanged commission to make fund raising easier later on.† But all the paper work and the immediate needs of the children weighed on me.† I reasoned that I have the money and the children need the treatment right away.† I was also unsure whether my motives for putting up an NGO was not just to have an organization of which I am president.

I then started meeting with Dr. Richard Elwyn Fernando and Elizabeth Ann Fernando to formulate a protocol for the dental treatment of juvenile diabetics .† When I was confident already that we had a good protocol, I then approached Dr. Noel Vallesteros of the Pediatric Dentistry Center.† The Pediatric Dentistry Center is a training facility for dentist who wants to gain knowledge in the field of Pediatric Dentistry.† I figured that I couldnít handle the volume of patients in my private clinic and so I decided to do the project at the PDC and at the same time.† I became a consultant to help train the dentists undergoing training at the PDC in the management of juvenile diabetics.

During the summer of 1998, I participated in my most memorable juvenile diabetes summer camp.†† I learned so much about diabetes and I grew so attached to the kids that up to now we still keep tabs on one another.† The camp became a good place to promote my project.

Right after the camp, we were swamped with kids asking for dental treatment at the PDC.† Not only because the treatment was free but the camp fever was still raging and the kids wanted to keep on seeing each other daily.† The PDC became a venue for the kids to continue the friendship they forged during summer.

By June of 1998, most of the attendees of the camp have finished their dental treatment.† Those who havenít finished couldnít come anymore because School has begun.† In July of 1998, the number of juvenile diabetics availing of the free dental treatment has decreased.† I then decided to treat them myself in my dental clinic at St. Lukeís Medical Center.

In October of 1998, one of the dentist who finished the course in pediatric Dentistry called me to say that she has started her practice in Poblacion, San Antonio, Nueva Ecija.† One of her patient was a 6 year old boy named Warly Ilano.† I told Dr.Evelyn Marcos that she can bill us for the treatment that she will provide Warly.† In this way, the patient didnít have to travel all the way to Manila to receive dental treatment and now we have a dentist in Nueva Ecija equipped with the knowledge and skill in treating diabetics.

After 1 year of treating young diabetics, I realized that the problem was more than just teeth.† There seem to be a lot of children who are not enrolled in school.† Insufficiency of funds was the most common reason given.† However, what struck me was the social reasons given.† Apparently, there is a fear among diabetics of letting their classmates learn of their condition and even worse they are afraid of having a hypoglycemia episode in class and do something embarrassing.

In 1999, I challenged the older kids to take the entrance exam given by the Philippine Postal Foundation Incorporated. Anyone who passes the exam will be given money for tuition fee.† Only one girl took up the challenge and pass the exam.† Her name is Mallou Tolentino.† She became the recipient of an extension project of POHJD called project: Balik-Eskwela.† Her course was Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Major in Postal Management.† The ad from the foundation also said that a job in the postal office is almost guaranteed after finishing the course. Dr. Jolly Guinto and Francis Pasaporte also donated money for the first semester.

In 2000, Rainbow camp was officially registered to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Bureau of Internal Revenue. The yearly camp started by Dr. Ric Fernando back in1982, became officially known as Rainbow Camp.† I was fortunate to be invited to become a board member of an this organization which has made a great impact on individual lives.

In 2002, somebody asked me the question, why diabetics?† I didnít know how to answer.† Then a girl by the name of Kathryn Mae Jao came to me in the clinic.† She is currently in remission and her last chemotherapy had drained their financial resources as well as promoted cavities in her teeth.† She became the recipient of another extension project of POHJD called Project: Oral Health for Children Undergoing Chemotherapy (POHCC).†

In 2003, Ms Mallou Tolentino graduated.† But before she could graduate.† The Foundation closed down and the students were absorbed by Wesleyan University.† She graduated with a† Bachelor of Science in Commerce major in Management degree but the promise of employment did not materialize.