ALYANA at De La Salle-Araneta U

June 4, 2011

From ASAP news as reported by Cathy Genovia last May 24, 2011

The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) office in Kamias received an invitation from Malabon. Ms. Luisa Marie Arriola, Chair of the Special Education Unit at the De La Salle Araneta University and an ASP Member, wrote to ASP requesting that the Alyana film be shown at their university. Ms. Mirana Medina went personally to meet the 80 participants, along with Cathy Genovia, ASP Volunteer and Aldrin Gabriel, a deaf actor who portrays Rizal in Miranamedina’s upcoming film…

alyana in araneta

After focusing her first documentary film on autism, Medina was inspired to make films featuring different disabilities; she believes that film is a very potent and effective medium that can help change some of the society’s misconceptions about these disabilities.

In her speech before the film viewing, Mirana Medina said (in jest, but from the heart): “sana after niyo mapanood eh, mag shift na din kayo sa SPED, dahil marami ang nangangailangan senyo…

We have learned from the emcee, Marinel Prepotente, a SpEd teacher in the same university, that most of the viewers were teachers of the regular classes. She also mentioned that students with autism had doubled in population at the school, which is why they thought of showing Alyana: they believed that it would make it easier for them to explain autism to their regular teachers.

De La Salle Araneta University is also accepting PWAs in their regular classrooms. Watching the documentary can give teachers a deeper understanding of the children with autism they accept. When the film was over, four teachers shared their reflections.

A teacher who handled a child with autism shared her experience of what it was like inside the classroom. At first she asked herself why the administration always gave her children with special needs. After some time spent with children with special needs, she realized her mission in life, and was grateful to learn more about autism after watching the film.

A parent of a child with AD/HD paid her gratitude and respect to all the teachers who helped and accepted her child. Another parent also shared her experience of life with her special child, who is now in heaven.

One father raised his hand and said: “…sa ngayon wala na ako pakialam sa sasabihin ng iba. Only few of my friends here knew that I have a son in the spectrum. Now I can say that I am a proud father of a 5 year old boy with autism…” With that, his superior and co-teachers understood why he needed to absent himself every Saturday: it was because of his child’s schedule for therapy.

After these four shared their personal experiences, Cathy Genovia was given the chance to inform the viewers about Autism Society Philippines. This also enabled her to invite the father who has a child with autism to join the May 21 Family Support Group Meeting, and she informed him about the Person with Disability (PWD) ID for his CWA.

Genovia also took the opportunity to invite the teachers to attend ASP’s back-to-back seminars on May 28. As they are accepting CWAs in the regular classroom, too, the seminar topics will be of benefit: “Inclusion of Children with Autism in the Regular Classroom” and “Differentiated Instruction”.

On behalf of ASP, Genovia thanked the people behind the invitation: Luisa Marie Arriola, Chair of the Special Education Unit; Allison Parpan, Principal; and Marinel Prepotente and Celine Anne Mallari, both SpEd teachers. In return, Peprotente provided ASP with a donation in an envelope.


  1. Hi, I was told that there’s a film about Dr. Jose Rizal in FSL. I would love to learn more about my Lolo. Will that video be online? Hoping to hear from you soon.

  2. Hi Caya!! I didn’t know that you left a message for me written in 2011 before your Lolo’s birthday!!! I should have known you earlier then if I did… Obviously, I didn’t read it most probably because I was too busy in meeting the deadline to finish Ultimo Adios in FSL. Anyhow, I feel chatting with you occasionally online until now compensated for that…

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