MANILA, Philippines Elder Richard J. Maynes of the Seventy and president of the Philippines Area presented the 2005 Family Values Awards recently in Manila. Honored were Mrs. Lina B. Laigo, former secretary of the Department of Social Welfare and Development and current executive director of the Council for the Welfare of Children, and Mr. Leopoldo M. Moselina, former chief of the Child Protection Unit of UNICEF Manila. This is the first time the Church bestowed the award to Filipino recipients.
It was during Mrs. Laigo's term as cabinet secretary under former Philippines President Fidel B. Ramos that an executive order was signed declaring the last week of September as National Family Week. In her acceptance speech, Mrs. Laigo gave the Church credit for helping lay the groundwork for the celebration of Family Week. The Church has actively participated in Family Week celebrations since 1995.
Mr. Moselina was cited for a community-based program for poor urban women and children that he and other colleagues from the Columban University initiated in 1983. This program was eventually adopted by the city government of Olongapo as the city's Urban Basic Services Program. Today, the same program is being implemented in 22 cities around the Philippines.
Mr. Moselina quoted from President Gordon B. Hinckley's book Standing for Something: "Society's problems arise, almost without exception out of the homes of the people. If there is to be a reformation, if there is to be a change, if there is to be a return to old and sacred values, it must begin in the home, with parents instilling within the children virtues that will make them into strong, contributing members of society."