“It has always been JCI Naga Cariñosa’s advocacy as a all-female chapter to empower and protect women,” JCI Naga Cariñosa Chapter Leader Shenana E. Lim said in an interview with BICOL STANDARD.
The panty, she said, is not only a literal image of protection, but also a symbolic one against the alarming number of cases of violence and abuse against children within their own families and communities.
“For this drive, we are collaborating with LGUs, municipal social workers, and barangays to develop a sustainable, community response to sexual assault on children and family violence,” she explained.
“Our goal is to reduce the number of child and adult victims of sexual and domestic abuse by promoting hygiene and nurturing the family,” she added.
“It’s a basic idea—to cover what must be covered—but this is a need that is often ignored by poor families. For instance, in households where the family sleeps in a single room, the children’s private parts are shielded from the eyes of immoral adults, reducing their motivation to commit nefarious acts,” she said.
“This is a human investment,” she said, referring to the parenting education that she views as a legacy that is passed on to children when they, too, grow up to form families of their own.
“The Panty Drive goes above protecting children to strengthening the foundation of families which build better communities. We are motivating not only the members of our organization, but also the families and communities to be passionate about positive change,” she stressed.
She added that while the drive currently focuses on local communities, the goal is to one day make it a nationwide activity.
“JCI Philippines has the potential to become a model for other civic movements as an organization that acknowledges the importance of underwear as a basic and vital human need,” she said. “Thus, we hope that one day this is replicated by other organizations.”