Perpetual Help U Stages Indigenous Tribal Games In Occ Mindoro

Hundreds of Mangyan indigenous athletes have engaged in a day-long indigenous tribal games sponsored by the University of Perpetual Help System Dalta(UPHSD) Mission School, in cooperation with the outreach project of Junior Chamber International (JCI)-Manila in Sitio Lawaan, Barangay Lumangbyan here.

The cultural and native sporting events took place in the sprawling ancestral domains of the Mangyan indigenous cultural communities at the slopes of the Occidental Mindoro highlands, on riversides and forested areas, last Thursday (June 7).

The Mangyan indigenous athletes displayed their skills and mastery in the native sports like the "Gintong Pana" (basic archery); "Hari ng Gubat" (archery assault); "Pana Sa Lupaing Ninuno (tree top archery);" "sumpit" (tribal blowpipe arrow); and "Palakasan ng Sibat" (javelin spear throwing).

Retired Colonel Jeff DL Tamayo, UPHSD vice president for sports and the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) 2nd vice president, has pioneered the Philippine Indigenous Tribal Games and vows to promote and sustain the tribal and native games among the indigenous communities across the country.

Tamayo disclosed that the Indigenous Tribal Games are fully supported by the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC), Philippine Soft Tennis Association (PSTA) and the UPHSD, with the aim of protecting and preserving the country's cultural heritage and engaging the IPs for their recognition and promotion of their cultural ancestry, communities and domains.

Tribal games author Tamayo and coaches at the UPHSD Mission School here also briefed the IP leaders and athletes on the honor code and game rules among tribal sportsmen before the start of the game.

Local observers and organizers were awed at the craft, mastery and the warrior-like extreme adventure games in their customary attire atop trees, and on hunting skills displayed in their ancestral domains.

Winners received their medals and cash prizes.

Similar tribal games were also held early this year for the Aeta Cultural Communities in Barangay Sapang Bato in Angeles City, Pampanga and the T'Boli tribal sports leg in T'boli, South Cotabato.

UPHSD organizers said that its mission school for the Mangyan indigenous peoples here has embarked on the fun-games for the IPs anchored on the university's guiding principle of teaching, community service and research as it nurtures the value as "Helpers of God."

It has taken its role as catalyst for human development and engages the far-flung underprivileged and socially-deprived indigenous peoples as part of strengthening the moral fiber of Filipinos, proud of their race and heritage as a people.

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