Archive for the ‘Alyana Study of Autism in the Philippines’ Category


Seminar on Early Detection of Autism with “ALYANA” in Dasma Take 4!!!

March 21, 2015
Final Schedule of the Seminar on Early Detection of Autism and Screening of ALYANA --- A Study of Autism in the Philippines

Final Schedule of the Seminar on Early Detection of Autism and Screening of ALYANA — A Study of Autism in the Philippines

In celebration of the Women’s Month, my documentary on autism will be screened anew in Dasmariñas City, Cavite. It will be the fourth time that the film will be shared to the people, this time to 165 Chapter Presidents of Kababaihan ng Dasmariñas sa Bagong Milenyo [KDBM].

The City Social Welfare Development Office has also initiated another seminar specifically for women with disabilities to be held on March 30. For details on the Seminar on Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children, and the Seminar on Early Detection of Autism, please see the sked above.

The mayor of the city, Hon. Jennifer Barzaga will give an inspirational message to the participants.


For 165 Women Presidents of KDBM, “Alyana” in Dasmariñas City

March 8, 2015

Received an invitation from Dasmariñas City Welfare and Development Office Head Ms. Rosalita Abuan for the screening of ALYANA again in their city, this time intended for 165 Chapter Presidents of Kababaihan ng Dasmariñas sa Bagong Milenyo [KDBM]. In the afternoon, Barangay Nutrition scholars of the city will be the target participants of the Seminar on Early Detection of Autism.

It is a coincidence that they are holding it this March since the film is my tribute to Mothers of Children with Autism, and was originally targeted to be shown during the International Women’s Day years back.

The two previous screenings of Alyana according to Ms. Abuan “have inspired lots of women / mothers and public servants to become more loving, caring and understanding…” Touched by the film when it was first shown in the city, she surely must have seen, in fact, experienced the impact of the film herself. There was thus that immediate decision to re-show it to day care workers, and other interested groups. Because of the information and first-hand testimonials documented in the film, the day care workers for example, either confirmed some questions in their minds regarding children they are dealing with, or come to understand better those children so they would know what to do in case they encounter those who are likely having the condition. And with Jan Peña, Autism Society Philippines-Dasmariñas City Chapter president around with her son who wouldn’t get inspired? Ka-tandem kami uli…

The showing will be held on March 24, 2015 at Little Sunshine Day Care Center, Barangay San Simon.  The mayor of the city, Hon. Jennifer Barzaga will give her inspirational message to the participants.

Below is what they call their Time Plan:

Dasma tk3 invite

Happy International Women’s Day to All!


Alyana Reached Out to 108 Barangay Day Care Workers, DLSU-Dasma Students and Parents of Children with Autism

March 5, 2015

Ms. Rosalita Abuan, City Social Welfare and Development Office Department Head speaks before the 108 day care workers

108 Barangay day care workers from 108 Day care centers of the City of Dasmariñas in Cavite under the City Social Welfare and Development Office headed by Ms. Rosalita Abuan, RSW attended a Seminar on Early Detection of Children with Autism last February 17. Autism Society of the Philippines-Dasmariñas City Chapter president Jan Peña enlightened the captive audience about autism.


Bubbly, energetic, inspiring Jan Peña, ASP-Dasmariñas City, Cavite Chapter President explains to the health care workers what autism is — signs and symptoms, etc.

It was followed by the showing of “Alyana— A Study of Autism in the Philippines” which further helped them understand what autism is based on testimonials not only of mothers of children with autism, but also those who are working for their welfare such as a developmental pediatrician, and sped teachers. As always, the film touched some people in the audience. Alyana by the way is my grandniece…

Day Care

The showing of Alyana to seminar attendees


The activity ended with picture taking such as this one x 12 groups. Front row: [3rd fr left is Marie Shiela Antenor-Haloc who coordinated with me, Dave, 2nd from right is the city’s PDAO president]

In the afternoon of the same day, I was dropped by the DSWD group to De La Salle University-Dasma to show the film to College of education students, especially those who are taking up sped education, parents and relatives of children with autism, and some professors. The film viewing was held at Felipe Calderon Hall.
Felipe Calderon
HPIM0059When the lights were switched on, I was an eyewitness to seeing almost all the parents of children with autism [CWA] wiping their tears after viewing the film. Nakasakay daw sila with all the moms who gave their testimonies. If I were in their shoes, I would understandably be touched by the segment on Denial and Acceptance, especially so, if the viewer has a newly-diagnosed child with autism. At the same time, they must have felt good somehow in seeing that they are not alone. In fact, they must have felt luckier because there are support groups like ASP, and there are expert doctors, not psychiatrists who are attending to their children’s needs. Parents of CWAs in the 80’s up to the 90’s had to go to psychiatrists for treatment.

It is March. When I was doing the film I was targeting to have it shown during the International Women’s Film Festival at the UP Film Center. As I featured mothers of CWA’s, I thought I would show it as my personal tribute to them. For a couple of years I have failed for I took so long to finish it! I had no camera when I decided to work on it. I just borrowed from friends. It became sort of a challenge eventually as hurdle after hurdle came my way. Anyhow, with perseverance, I finally finished the film after two-and-a-half years and have it shown not during the Women’s month which I targeted but in July 2006. Nevertheless, I still succeeded in showing its shortest version at last during the Women’s International day the following year. From then on, up until now, it continues to show. In fact, I received today another invitation to show it — for the third time at Dasmariñas City under the auspices of the super-active DSWD of the city.

The documentary is dedicated to parents whose unconditional love for their children never ceases… to all others who are working for their welfare, and of course, to all persons with autism so that our society would embrace them like anyone else in this world.


Future Educators to Watch ALYANA at DLSU-Dasma

February 16, 2015

As part of the activities for the Lasallian Festival, the College of Education of De La Salle University-Dasmariṅas located in Cavite will offer a free showing of “Alyana,” a documentary film on autism, for their students tomorrow, Tuesday afternoon at 1 pm, February 17, 2015.

Through the film, the intended audience will hopefully be enlightened and inspired in accepting and empowering individuals with special needs especially persons with autism. A segment on the experiences of sped teachers handling children with autism will also give them a glimpse of what lies ahead for them, and the challenges they will have to face as future educators. It is an opportunity to encourage these young minds to advocate for the protection and recognition of the rights of children especially those with special needs.

ASP President Bacoor Chapter Pamela Turingan and ASP Vice President Dasmariṅas Chapter Marino Andal will be present to answer questions during the open forum. Also, parents of children enrolled at the Neurodevelopmental Center of De La Salle University Medical Center will come to view the film.

Venue: Felipe Calderon Hall Rooms 106 to 107.


ALYANA in Dasma_Feb 17: Day Care Workers in the Morning; Students in the Afternoon

February 14, 2015

ALYANA – A Study of Autism in the Philippines, my documentary which has been showing for nine years since 2006 in different cities and provinces all over the Philippines will revisit Dasmariñas City, Cavite on Tuesday, February 17. The film aims to help raise awareness on autism and break attitudinal barriers towards persons with autism by providing the right information and truth about it through testimonials by persons directly involved in looking after their welfare.

It is slated to have two free screenings in the city. In the morning, it is scheduled to be shown as part of the Seminar on Early Detection of Children with Autism to be conducted by the City Social Welfare Department led by Ms. Rosalita Abuan. For details of their activity, please see their program below:


At 1 p.m., it will be screened to education students of DLSU -Dasmarinas and parents at the Neurodevelopmental Center of De La Salle University Medical Center. Venue is Felipe Calderon Hall Rooms 106-107. The showing hopes to enlighten and inspire the students to accept and help empower individuals with special needs especially persons with autism, and to encourage them to become advocates for the protection and recognition of their rights. Ms. Elena Mercado has initiated the activity at DLSU.

Both screenings will have officers of Autism Society Philippines as resource persons.




“Alyana” to Meet Dasmariñas City Day Care Workers

February 13, 2015

On Tuesday morning of February 17, my docu ALYANA will again visit Dasmariñas City in Cavite. An invitation was extended once more by the Office of the City Social Welfare and Development led by its Head, Ms. Rosalita Abuan. The film showing is intended for Day Care Workers as part of their seminar on early detection of children with autism. Through the film, they will be made aware as to what autism is so that when they move around within their community, they can be alerted as well as the parents of the children or adult they come in contact who could be manifesting signs and symptoms of autism. It is especially important that children with autism be attended to for their early intervention needs upon detection of the disorder. ASP Dasmariñas City Chapter President Jan Peña will be present to answer the participant’s questions on autism.

The program will start at 8 a.m. Venue is Doña Mercedes Day Care Center, Bgy. Sampaloc I, Dasmariñas City in Cavite. Facilitators are: Ms. Minerva Saquing and Ms. Marie Sheila Antenor-Haloc.


ALYANA Goes to Taguig City in Celebration of Philippine National Autism Week

January 27, 2015

Got the confirmation today!

ALYANA, my first feature-length documentary focusing on children with autism will be shown this Saturday, January 31, 2015 as part of Philippine National Autism Week Celebrations. The showing will be held at Senator “Compañero” Renato Cayetano Memorial Science and Technology High School located at 31st corner 51st St., Pamayanang Diego Silang, Ususan in Taguig City.

Time: 1:00 – 2:30 pm; 3:00 – 4:30 pm.

The screening is being initiated by Taguig PDAO.

ALYANA continues to screen and hop around towns and cities to help raise autism awareness. The original version was first shown in 2006 at the UP Film Center. It was last shown in Naga City, Bicol Province last December 2014 under the auspices of Autism Society of the Philippines Naga Chapter. Alyana, my grandniece with autism sparked me to make the documentary.


ALYANA Screening at Bicol State College_December 13

December 12, 2014

As part of Autism Society Philippines-Naga City Chapter’s autism awareness and advocacy campaign, Alyana — A Study of Autism in the Philippines, my documentary on autism will be screened at the Bicol State College of Applied Sciences and Technology in Naga City, Bicol Province. The showing is scheduled tomorrow, December 13 from 8 am. To represent the National Office is Jan Peña, ASP Board of Trustee member. She left Manila last night for Naga City.

Mr. Santos Braga, president of ASP-Naga City Chapter is hosting the event. The group believes that the film will help raise their community’s awareness on the condition of persons with autism. And just like them, I know that our society will find it easier to embrace their children once they get to know what exactly autism is.

Alyana, by the way is my grandniece with autism. The film however, is not only about her. It is about ALL children/persons with autism. It covers from low function to high function / Asperger Syndrome cases like Gabby Atienza. He interestingly described his own condition as an aspie. Symptoms and causes, the plight of parents, even the doctor’s explanations and thoughts are included for better understanding of autism.

It will be the second time around for Alyana in Naga…


ALYANA Reaches Out to Barangay Zone 1-A, Dasmariñas City

November 3, 2014
DASMA Zone 1A_4

Showing of “Alyana” in the Covered Court of Barangay Zone 1-A, Dasmariñas City, Cavite

In line with the objective of Autism Society Philippines to help raise autism awareness to Filipino communities, ALYANA my docu on autism was shown on October 24, 2014 in collaboration with the Office of the Mayor Hon. Jennifer A. Barzaga, the City Social Welfare Department, and Persons with Disability Affairs Office of Dasmariñas City. Leaders representing each barangay welcomed the attendees who were mostly members of the PWD sector of the city and the community of Zone 1-A.


Ms. Rosalita G. Abuan, RSW, Head of the CSWDO with Jan Peña, then ASP National President, now Member of the Board of Trustees of ASP welcomed the audience and gave their special messages. Ms. Peña also gave her parting words charged with so much energy, quite hopeful in tone, and so empowering I am sure to those who are losing hope re having a child with autism. I gave a short introduction to the film before the showing.. A mother of a person with Cerebral Palsy, not Autism approached me before leaving to say that she was touched by the film, and that she shed tears while viewing the docu. Understandably, they, like parents of PWAs experience similar problems when it comes to rearing a special child. Two others approached me to share their story and their problems in handling their children. I asked them to wait for the forum after the screening because the best person to discuss with them was no other than Jan herself. She gave her sound advice as parents feel lightened for sure on the fact they they are not alone.

The successful activity which started a little after 3 pm finished at about 6.30 pm. Two more screenings have been requested by Ms. Abuan — next time targeting the social workers, caregivers, and barangay health personnel. Mr. David D. Gonzaga, CFPWD President gave the closing remarks.

DASMA Zone 1A_10

MM and Jan Peña, [3rd and 4th from L] with the Members of the Organizing Committee



ALYANA in DASMA for Dasmarineños

October 23, 2014

Tomorrow afternoon, a screening of “Alyana”, my docu on autism is scheduled to be shown in Dasmariñas, Cavite. See the programme of activities prepared by the City Social Welfare and Development of Dasmariñas City in collaboration with Autism Society Philippines. The organizers believe that “it would be a great opportunity and a learning experience to Dasmarineños with or without child of autism to gain learning and understanding about autism.”