Volunteerism takes on a creative and healing turn when Chevron Philippines Inc. (CPI), marketer of the Caltex brand of fuels and lubricants, scheduled the fourth day of the 2016 Week of Caring (WOC) program as a recreational art therapy session for pediatric patients from the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) Cancer Institute.
Twenty employees of CPI volunteered their time and companionship for one whole day of outreach activity that forms part of this year’s five-day WOC program running from September 19 to 23.
With the holiday season just around the corner, the CPI volunteers and the children designed Christmas cards during the session. The Christmas cards created were later pinned to a wooden board for everyone to see.
The WOC volunteers learned that creative expression can lead to an improvement in the healing process and betterment of the well-being of the cancer patients. Dr. Jorge Ignacio of the PGH Cancer Institute underscored the importance of art therapy sessions such as this to cancer patients. “Through this art exposure, we found out that the children have the artistic capability that can be developed with proper guidance and motivation,” he explained.
“Aside from that, art therapy also stimulates positive hormones which can help improve their treatment. The artistic value of the outputs that they produced gives them a better sense of well-being, increased productivity rate and a sense of accomplishment. These are things that are very important to them,” he added.
Irish Trasadas, 14, one of the outpatients who volunteered to show her Christmas card in front of the audience couldn’t help but shed a tear as she expressed her heartfelt gratitude to Chevron and the CPI volunteers who guided them during the art therapy day. “I am very thankful to Chevron for spending time with us. I really enjoyed the activity because it helped me relax and it also gained me new friends,” she shared.
CPI HR Manager Ramon Ortiz shared, “As a company, some of the most invaluable things we can offer these children are our time, companionship and friendship which are something they can really appreciate more than anything else. We are very happy to be able to provide meaningful opportunities like this so our employees can keep inspired to give back to communities not just in terms of material things.”
Week of Caring, now on its ninth edition, is a yearly social responsibility project of Chevron which boosts volunteerism and helping the needy among CPI employees and business partners.