December 6, 2022

The Department of Social Welfare and Development Cordillera has named the Adjaro family from Baguio City as the very first regional winner for the Search for Natatanging Pamilyang Pilipino.

The search is done in celebration of the 30th National Family Week with the theme, “Urbanisasyon at pamilyang Pilipino: Magkaagapay sa pagpapatibay at pagpapaunlad ng bansa.”

NATATANGING PAMILYA — The family of Johnny and Martina Adjaro that is blessed with six children has been declared as the first regional winner in the search for Natatanging Pamilyang Pilipino, besting other contenders from Baguio City and Benguet. The search was part of the celebration of the 30th National Family Week with the theme “Urbanisasyon at Pamilyang Pilipino: Magkaagapay sa Pagpapatibay at Pagpapaunlad ng Bansa”. — DSWD-CAR photo

Guided by the saying “Family is where life begins and love never ends,” the Adjaro family bested other contenders from Baguio City and Tuba, Benguet. 

Johnny and Martina Adjaro met in Baguio in 1976. Bound by love, faith, and commitment, the couple got married and started their family life which was blessed with six children.

Determined to provide their children with a bright future, the couple patiently wrestled the hardships of life. Johnny continued to work as a secondary school teacher while Martina had to stop working as a midwife to attend to the needs of the family at home.

Having a big family had been a challenge to the couple, especially in sending the children to school. They doubled their effort by engaging in farming, planting highland vegetables, raising dairy cows and pigs. These additional sources of income of the family became instrumental in financing the educational expenses of their children. The children also did their part as they qualified in different scholarships.

However, the family’s smooth sailing journey was struck by a big wave when one of their children got pregnant while still attending school. She was then full of despair with the thought of failing her parents. But the couple did not make her feel that way; instead, they encouraged her to keep going.

After years of sacrifices, all of their children were able to graduate – two of them are now engineers, one is a financial manager, one followed the footsteps of their father as a teacher, one is a nurse, and the other one is an entrepreneur.

The success of their children manifests the domineering but tenderhearted parenting role of Johnny and Martina.

While being hands-on with their children, the couple did not forget to give back to their community as the family is known to engage in community and civic activities and to lend a hand to those in need.

The pandemic did not hamper the family to continue strengthening their family’s bond. They took advantage of the work from home set-up and the use of technology to maintain open communication, and spiritual sharing among the members.

Nominees also include Nesar and Ligaya dela Cruz’ family who is also from Baguio City. The family is included in the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program in 2009 and was awarded as grand winner in the Regional Huwarang Pantawid Pamilya in 2017 by the DSWD-CAR.

From struggling to make ends meet, the couple is able to send their children to school, one of them is a graduating Architecture student and one is taking up Dentistry. Their eldest child is already a licensed teacher.

The Juan family from Tuba, Benguet was also nominated for the search. Sibayan and Manding Juan are known in their community for actively participating in community activities especially in promoting agriculture, clean and green activities and actively ministering to the spiritual growth of our community’s children and young people.

While Sibayan is performing his duties as punong barangay of Taloy Sur, Manding happily engages in cut flower and livestock production. The couple raised six children, all of whom are already graduates and are engaging in their respective livelihood ventures.

The family believes they could draw strength from each other and by living with the rhythm of grace. Indeed, in every family there is difficulty. The Juan Family believes in staying humble and kind.

The nominees each received P5,000 consolation prize along with a certificate from the DSWD while the Adjaro family received P10,000 and a plaque. The Adjaro family will also represent the Cordillera in the upcoming national search and has already been adjudged as part of the top five contenders.

The Search for Natatanging Pamil-yang Pilipino highlights the resiliency, courage, and strength demonstrated by the Filipino family in overcoming challenges they face, including the Covid-19 pandemic. It also looks at how families cope with difficulties and their ways to adapt to these changes. “We hope the stories of the Adjaro, dela Cruz, and Juan families serve as an inspiration for us to continue loving and cherishing our families not just as we celebrate the National Family Week but every day. Despite our busy schedule, let us not forget to spend time with our families who serve as our strength as we face life’s challenges,” DSWD Regional Director Leo L. Quintilla said. – Press release