MEDCAP 2017 _Baragatan sa Barangay

Baragatan sa Barangay

(An Island Hopping Mission)

ACIM-Asia was invited to participate in the Baragatan sa Barangay by WESTERN COMMAND (WESCOM) of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), a program by the Office of the Governor of Palawan together with other partners.

Baragatan comes from the Cuyuno word "bagat," which means to meet or to gather. So Baragatan is an assembly or gathering of Palawe├▒os. 

The Baragatan sa Baragay was held in four (4) different barangay islands of Balabac namely barangay Poblacion, Bual Ramos, Bancalaan and Mangsee. Balabac, Palawan is a second class municipality of the province of Palawan. It is  a group of about 36 islands located in the southern end of Palawan nearing or bordering Sabah, Malaysia.

1st Stop at Barangay Poblacion

The Governor’s Team and their partners, Team WESCOM with ACIM-Asia, left the Philippine Navy port in  Puerto Princesa around 4 in the afternoon on 7th of July 2017. We arrived the following day about the same time we left Puerto Princesa. 

Three ships bearing supplies(2 from the Government of Palawan and the BRP Rizal (PS-74) ) from the 
Philippine Navy were bound for Balabac, Palawan for the Baragatan sa Barangay.
Sailing to Poblacion Balabac with the goods, equipments and volunteers. 
The sleeping quarter of the military who were providing security for the mission group. 
A hammock is a good place to sleep or rest for those who get seasick.
Arrival in Poblacion, Balabac (8 July 2017).
The port of Poblacion Balabac, a mere 3 minutes walk from the venue of the Baragatan.
Roaming around Poblacion, Balabac and talking and getting to know the the locals with Dr Henri Cousin (left),
 a French volunteer doctor of ACIM.
Discussion on the flow of the mission with Ms Anna Andong  from the Office of the Governor of Palawan,
 the over-all head and in charge of the Baragatan sa Barangay.

The port of Poblacion, Balabac.

Day 1 of Barangatan sa Barangay in Poblacion, Balabac Palawan (09 July 2017)

The first day of the Baragatan started with everyone registering for the different services offered by the team namely medical consulation, dental consulation and extractions, free medicines, veterinary services, free haircut and circumcision.

Outside the venue of the Baragatan. Beneficiaries waiting for their turn to register.

Registration area to avail of the different services offered.

Very long queue for people who wanted to avail the medical and dental services.

Vital signs area.
There were five (5) medical doctors, 2 were locals, 2 from the military and Dr. Henri Cousin from France representing ACIM-Asia.

Dr. Henri Cousin, double checking the blood pressure of the patient.

Dental Team from Naval Forces West (Philippine Navy)
The Pharmacy area manned by the people from the Office of the Governor, WESCOM and ACIM-Asia.
ACIM-Asia signage.
Free haircut for everybody by the Marine Battalion Landing Team 4.
Bags and school supplies were  given to the pupils of the barangay through their schools from Team WESCOM.

Unloading the school supplies from the ship.

Children playing in the port vicinity were given school supplies.

Teachers and school board received the bags and school supplies for their pupil from
representative of MBLT-4 and the CMOU West (PN)
Free food (lunch), bags of rice were also given to all the constituents of the barangay, and other government services. Tree seedling were  released to the Barangay Unit and mechanical equipment was left or loaned.

Lunch were served for free to all the beneficiaries.
Bags of Rice for the town people.
Barangay Poblacion Balabac has a population of 3,648 which was also the targeted beneficiaries of the activity. The Governnor of Palawan arrived to gave everyone encouraging words and to remind them of their duties to their communities and reminded them that the government is there to protect and help them in their needs. 

The military on the other hand conducted Civil Military Operations activities like campaign talk about Anti-terrorism awareness and how to report to the authorities  if they encounter rebels.

The Governor of Palawan, far left with the MBLT 4 Commanding Officer LTC Danilo Facundo

From the Civil Relation Group (CRG), Civil Relation Service (CRS) AFP, campaign against terrorism.
Singing and dancing competition were also part of the program where in cash and rice incentives were given to the winners.

Dancing competition for the kids.

Team ACIM-Asia and ACUCS for CMO, U7 of WESCOM.

2nd Stop at Barangay Bual Ramos, Balabac Palawan and Day 2 of Baragatan sa Barangay 

(10 July 2017)

After the mission in Barangay Poblacion, Balabac, the whole Baragatan Team had to leaved around midnight for Bual Ramos. We arrived around 6:00 in the morning and around 8AM, we started to unload the things needed in the mission to the makeshift raft and motorboat.

Transferring of things need for the Baragatan from our ship to the makeshift raft.

Security forces and volunteers are transported from the ship to the island by speed boat.
Using the “lantsa” or motor boat as a means to transport volunteers, security forces and sacks of rice.
Finally, we arrived at Bual Ramos Elementary School where the Baragatan was held. 

A very small pier for small boats or “bangka” only.

The pier.

Boxes of medicines were carried out to the venue manually. The only available transportation inside the island are motorcycles.

A sudden pouring of rain halted everyone from their work and were busy finding shelter from the rain.

Sheltering from the pouring rain.

Services offered to Bual Ramos were the same services rendered to Poblacion Balabac. Target beneficiries for the said barangay was 2,331. The last mission the island received was in 1972 and it was just a Dental Mission.

Registration of patients.
Getting the vital sign of the patient.
With P2LT J. Cimagala MC, one of the medical doctors of Baragatan from the NFW, PN Medical Team
Dr. Henri Cousin a medical doctor from France.
P2LT C Angeles DS, the head of the Dental Team from CTW, PAF Dental Team
The Pharmacy.

A counter terrorism talks to the people of Bual Ramos.

Recipients of the bags and school supplies.
Free porridge for everyone in the venue.
Lining up for their free rice.
Bual Ramos residents going home after receiving their bag rice.

3rd Stop at Barangay Bancalaan, Balabac Palawan and Day 3 of Baragatan sa Barangay 

(11 July 2017)

Our third mission area was in barangay Bancalaan another island barangay of Balabac with population of 11,701. Same with Bual Ramos which don’t have a port we had to transport all goods and personnel by speed boat and motorboat.

Services offered were the same. The island was hit by a strong rain during the mission and the venue was flooded but despite the unfavorable weather, people still flock the venue to avail of the services offered.

Vital signs area manned by the military people.

With CPT  W. Abulencia MC, a medical doctor from 570th CTW, PAF Medical Team

The medical consultation area.

The dental area.

Pharmacy area.

Heavy rains hits the island but the mission still continues.

Lining up for the free rice.

Porridge and lunch was serve for all.
Bancalaan are mostly inhabited by the different tribe of Muslim namely the Ubian, Molbog, Cagayanan, Tausog and few Maranaos. Maranao or people from Marawi are their mostly to engage in small business as Maranao are more well know as business people.

Children were everywhere.

Eating the porridge that was freely given in the mission venue.

Despite the heavy rains, some still brought their children and have no qualms in getting their children wet from the rains. 

4th Stop at Barangay Mangsee, Balabac Palawan

Last day of Baragatan sa Barangay and it was held in Mangsee Island which is bordering Sabad, Malaysia. The island is nearer to Malaysia than the mainland Palawan. You can already see the mountains of Sabah, Malaysia. Goods in the island are mostly from Malaysia. Phones registered to Philippine cellular companies does not work here. Cellular signals is from Malaysia.

Mangsee Island, the mountain behind the island is Sabah, Malaysia.

Mangsee Island has a population of 9,016. 

Houses near the shore.
The Governor of Palawan visited the island together with some of the military officials from WESCOM.

The Governor of Palawan (left in stripped red polo), Dr Henri and some officials of WESCOM.

Day 4 of Baragatan sa Barangay 

(13 July 2017)

Services offered were the same as what had been offered to the previous barangays.

Crowds gather at Mangsee High School for the Baragatan.

A patient guided by Sgt Erwin Miro.

The Naval Forces Dental Team.

Done with their check-up and lining up for medicines.

Veterinary Services were also offered.

The barangay people waiting for their cue.

Anti-terrorism campaign.

The Marines, rendering songs and dance moves.
There were no electricity in the island and they rely only on solar power.

A generator was given to the island barangay to provide for electricity.

Balabac, Palawan
Number of People Served

9 July 2017
Brgy Poblacion
10 July 2017
Brgy Bual Ramos
11 July 2017
Brgy Bancalaan
13 July 2017
Brgy Mangsee
*Data from the Office of the Governor of Palawan                                                                                    

ACIM-Asia donated medicines to the Hospital (Medical Team and Dental Team) of WESCOM.

In the picture L-R: Elaine Salazar (ACIM-Asia), MSgt Dagupan from U7,
Civilian employee of the Hospital, 1LT Manage from the Medical Team
and 2LT Beren from Dental Team of the Hospital.

ACIM-Asia Team with LTC Gonzales, U7 of WESCOM and his staff.