KC Concepcion considers Uganda mission a life-changing experience

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KC Concepcion considers Uganda mission a life-changing experience Empty KC Concepcion considers Uganda mission a life-changing experience

Post by anne_cealydar on Tue 25 Jan 2011, 4:28 pm

KC Concepcion considers Uganda mission a life-changing experience

January 24, 2011, 8:50amMANILA, Philippines

It may have been a short trip, but KC Concepcion deemed her mission in Uganda, Africa for the United Nations World Food Program a “life-changing” and “eye-opening” experience.

“Siguro masasabi ko when you see the worst and you see the best, dun nangyayari kasi lahat ng worst at dun din nangyayari lahat ng best in terms of getting people out of hunger na parang solusyunan ang kagutuman because although ang ganda-ganda nung lugar nila, may mga problema din katulad natin dito sa Mindanao,” said the singer-TV host-actress on “The Buzz,” Jan. 23.

KC, the national ambassador for the UN-WFP, took part in the mission, her first ever internationally, which aimed to examine and alleviate the difficult condition in Uganda. She returned to the Philippines on Jan. 20 after the almost week-long endeavor.

The VTR which was shown before their live discussion showed images of KC interacting with the people of Uganda. “Bagamat hindi kami nagkakaintindihan sa salita, nagawa pa rin naming magkaunawaan dahil bukas ang aming mga puso.

“Wag nating babalewalain ang mga bagay na sa tingin natin ay malilit o hindi mahalaga. Dahil para sa iba, tulad ng mga tao sa Uganda, ito ang pinakamahalaga,” she said in her voice-over.

With her and the rest of the UN WFP team’s trips to three towns in Uganda---Karamoja, Karimojong and Kapchorwa---KC witnessed first-hand the problems that beset their people. Apart from hunger, KC related the rampancy and pervasiveness of poverty, rebellion, malnutrition (especially among children), HIV-AIDS, and even a combination of malnutrition and HIV among younger citizens.

Despite the harsh conditions in Uganda, the actress said that interventions have been and are continuously being made in order to help the people. For instance, WFP taught the locals of Karimojong how to make clay stoves where they can cook food, thus avoiding the hazards of collecting wood for fire. The people in Kapchorwa also see gradual progress as they were taught agricultural livelihood techniques.

“One fact is hunger kills more people… Ang kagutuman mas nakakamatay more than HIV, malaria and TB (tuberculosis) na pinagsama-sama natin,” said KC.

It was during her flight back to Manila that the celebrity fully absorbed the whole experience.

“It wasn’t until nandun ako sa eroplano na talagang tinamaan ako at tsaka dun ko naintindihan kung bakit after every day kasi naka-tatlo o apat na araw ‘yung mission namin, laging kailangan meron kayong debriefing, so meron kaming dalawang oras na nag-uusap lang kami after every day kasi kailangan mo palang iproseso ‘yon ng tama and kung hindi puwede kang ma-trauma,” KC related.

Although the condition in Uganda is serious, KC had her share of carefree moments with some of the residents. She recalled how curious the Africans looked when she took pictures and videos of them, and realized it was their first time to see a camera.

“Piniktyuran ko sila, [then] pinakita ko ‘yung picture nung babae. Ngayon lang ako nakakita ng ganun kalaking ngiti and na-realize ko, sa eroplano ko na lang na-realize, first time niyang makita ‘yung sarili niya. She’s so beautiful,” the 25-year-old KC related.

She also admired the women who walked barefoot to far-off areas just to fetch water.

“At ‘yung mga galon na dini-dispenser natin, ‘yung mabibigat… dala-dala nila sa mga ulo nila ‘yun, at naglalakad at minsan nagtatahi habang dala-dala nila sa ulo nila ‘yun (water),” KC shared animatedly.

Her co-hosts Charlene Gonzales and Toni Gonzaga were concerned about KC’s safety and security during her trip, but she assured, “Whenever you go in an international mission ‘yung UN staff meron talagang security precautions or training para in case of emergency. Pero it (danger) can happen anywhere diba?”

KC believes that hope can thrive even in the most hapless of situations.

“Kahit anong itapon mo dito... kahit anong itanim mo, tutubo,” she said.



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