Former Drug Addicts Join Kidapawan Community Food Pantry Initiative


OFFICE VOLUNTEERS. The community pantry in the grounds of the Holy Mediatrix of All Grace Cathedral in the town of Kidapawan, where police officers and volunteers from the Balik-Pangarap group joined to manage the initiative on Tuesday, April 27, 2021. Members of the Balik Pangarap are rehabilitated drug addicts who are now living normal lives. (Photos courtesy of Kidapawan CIO)

CITY OF KIDAPAWAN – The Balik-Pangarap organization, a group of drug dealers, joined with the local church and government agencies to establish the Community Kindness Pantry Post on the grounds of Holy Mediatrix Cathedral. All Grace here Tuesday.

Kidapawan Diocese launched the community pantry with local police, army and Balik Pangarap volunteers.

Joel Aguirre, Balik-Pangarap’s focal point, said the group was helping distribute food and other essential items to the community to cushion the impact of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic.

“It’s our little way to give back to the community that gave former addicts a chance to return to normal life,” Aguirre said.

Balik-Pangarap members brought canned goods and garden vegetables while volunteering to help facilitate, through appropriate health protocols, the pantry inside the cathedral grounds.

Aguirre said the pantry initiative is also a way for former drug addicts to reconnect with society at large.

“I’m not a psychologist, but I believe this act will literally improve their behavior and outlook as a whole,” he said.

The city government has implemented the Balik-Pangarap program to rehabilitate and reintegrate drug addicts into the society they once left behind due to illegal drug use.

The Dangerous Drugs Board recognized the local program for its drug prevention, education and rehabilitation strategies. (ANP)


Norma P. Rex

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