Saturday, March 07, 2020

LoveYourself Cebu Ushers in Batch Espada to Fight the Stigma

By Ryan Taborada

Twenty-one new volunteers from Batch Espada were welcomed to the LoveYourself family on February 16, 2020, at LoveYourself White House, in Cebu City.

This fourth batch of volunteers in Cebu was already involved in the HIV advocacy completing 50 hours of volunteer work prior to the orientation. This gave every volunteer to get to know each other and develop the dedication of working in the advocacy. 

“The orientation was a way to formally welcome Batch Espada volunteers who have already shown their commitment by rendering community hours before they were allowed to join the official orientation,” said Dennis Tagamolila, head of Cebu’s LoveU - the committee spearheading the event.


The day’s agenda included an HIV Situationer from Atty. Orville Dela Cerna, which presented data on the state of HIV transmissions both globally and locally. Tagamolila then continued with a discussion on volunteerism, invigorating the passion they have for the advocacy. Soon after LoveU member, Vince Briones introduced the HIV 101 module. Lastly, an overview of PrEP was given by Dr. Giancarlo Garaygay.

One of the trainees that day, Mike Anthony Maligsay, shared, “It was fulfilling to see all our efforts to acquire volunteer hours paying off in becoming official LoveYourself volunteers.”


The feeling of fulfillment filled the room and the volunteers. The preceding batches – Amuma, Bitoon, Kalayo, and Dasig – all share the same enthusiasm for the new batch, assisting in so many things as much as they could. Some have even found their niche in the committees to dedicate their time and talents.

LoveYourself White House in Cebu offers free and confidential HIV testing, counseling, and treatment to all, no matter the age, race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or expression. To be part of the organization, you can sign up at go.loveyourself.ph/cebuvolunteer or contact +63 927-873-7575.