We live in this world where young minds still wonder about the concept of superheroes: individuals who possess extraordinary powers and move the hearts of people to believe in hope despite adversity. These mental pictures created the invincible, the savant, and the immortals we see in different movies, comic books, video games, and television series.

Another chapter of Project Hero has unfolded as the Phi Kappa Mu Fraternity launched the first issue of Sinag: Pag-asa at Lakas ng Bawat Bata. A day spent letting children see the superhero inside them, the Sinag launch aimed to make them realize that they can let their dreams fly high and that cancer can’t keep them down.

It’s been a morning full of hope at the Children’s Playground of Rizal Park as the Phi Kappa Mu Fraternity welcomed more than a hundred guests composed of pediatric cancer patients and parents from Cancervants, Silahis ng Kalusugan UP Manila - Philippine General Hospital, and Bahay Aruga. Together with the partner organizations, the fraternity dreamed of spreading hope and strength to pediatric cancer patients who are suffering every day due their illnesses through a medium that is vivid, creative, and enjoyable-- through a comic book series.

The event kick-started with an inspiring yet heart-warming message from Edroico Mari Beltran Brillante Φ2015, the Senior Guardian of the Temple and overall head of the comic book launch. This was followed by the introduction of the people who made the Project Hero possible and the review of the previous milestones via creative and attention-grabbing audio-visual presentations.

The next part of the program was the booth sessions organized by our partner organizations namely Phi Lambda Delta Sorority as they provided free delicious ice cream for everyone; UP Biochemistry Society giving out colorful tattoos stickers to the kids; UP Manila - OMAKE with their mind-boggling memory game; UP Manila Campus Life teaching the kids how to do origami; Public Health Artist’s Circle; UP Flyers with their paper plate superhero booth; UP Health Sciences and Pre - Medicine Society with their fun fishing booth; UP Medicine Student Council giving sweet cotton candies; Alliance of UPLB Scholars with their mini science games; UP Human Ecology Student Society challenging the kids with their guessing game “how many candies are there in the bottle”; Philippine Association of Nutrition - Alpha Omega Chapter allowing the kids to finish a jigsaw puzzle; UP Delta Lambda Sigma  Sorority with their amazing face and hand paint booth; UA&P Polis with their coloring booth; UP Task Force Arki with their shoot that ball booth; DLSU Chemistry Society demonstrating a volcano eruption model; and UP Nursing Artists Corps.

The main part of the event was a skit presentation performed by our youngest brothers, Φ2017B Untouchables. The play started with the introduction of three fun-loving children: Allen (played by Allen Khriztofer Pineda Lichauco Φ2017B), a 10-year old kid from Bataan who dreams to be a singer-artist like his idol Iñigo Pascual; 12-year old Joram (played by Joram Nelson Parras Vivo II Φ2017B) from Muntinlupa City, who spent his whole life inside his house and wants to travel to famous tourist spots in the Philippines; and Zad (played by Zadkiel Flores Velasquez Φ2017B), a 14-year old aspiring dancer from Valenzuela City who hopes to perform in front of an audience. However, they believe that they cannot achieve their goals since they have a serious illness-- cancer. To their surprise, a kid named Morel (played by Morel Dominic Dragon Umipon Φ2017B) came out of nowhere and shared his story about his encounter with Sinag, a superhero who suddenly vanished without a trace.

Morel recognized Sinag as he was admitted to a hospital and found out that he also had cancer. Despite his illness and disappointment, he still saved the world due to the support and trust he received from the people around him. With that, one by one, Sinag (played by Steven Cuapoco Tan Tan Φ2017B) helped them in reaching for their dreams. He emphasized that no matter how big your dreams are, as long as you think that you can do it, you can achieve them even in the hardest of circumstances. The play ended with the children’s dreams fulfilled and hope engraved in their hearts.

After the inspiring skit presentation, world-class performances were witnessed by our guests as Ms. Madonna Decena and Mr. GJ Carlos serenaded the crowd with their melodious and outstanding voices.

Another fun part of the launch was the question and answer portion with the creators of Sinag comics-- Mr. Rico Rival whose strokes and imagination provided life  to Sinag; Mr. Peejay Catacutan who gave color to the superhero so his warmth and blaze was felt by the people around him, and to Mr. Ace Chin and Christopher Salamaed Constantino MD Φ2009 who made the direction and flow of the comic book’s story. Moreover, they shared the story and reason behind the creation of the comic series. At first, the comic book started as a 10-page reader encouraging pediatric cancer patients to undergo chemotherapy and giving them hope in their everyday struggles. Now, the first issue of the comics was filled with new characters and surprises that everyone will surely enjoy. What more can you ask for?

The program was officially closed by John Albert Amante Gonzales Φ2014 as he gave his closing remarks and certificate of appreciation to our partner organizations. Other than these, the fraternity gave loot bags full of amazing goodies and snacks to our guests so that they can replenish their strength from a long and exhausting adventure with Sinag!

The success of this event would not be possible without our sponsors: McDonald’s, Mont Albo Massage Hut, Sunburst Select, Oishi and Trampoline Park; together with our media partners: Clickthecity.com, Magic 89.9, Philippine Daily Inquirer and Wazzup Pilipinas.

In addition, this event is a superb start to the series of activities the fraternity has, as she celebrates her 85th year of existence this 2018. Three cheers to the heads of the Project Hero: Edroico Mari Beltran Brillante Φ2015, the current Senior Guardian of the Temple, Safrollah Muti Guinal Φ2017A, and Morel Dominic Dragon Umipon Φ2017B. More exciting and jam-packed happenings are yet to come!

 

Established in August 1933 by the UP College of Medicine's best medical students, the PHI KAPPA MU (Fraternity of the College of Medicine) continues to uphold its tested tradition of Excellence, Leadership, Service and Brotherhood in the College, University and in our country.

Through the Fraternity's ideals and pillars, her Loyal Sons continue to lead, innovate and excel in the practice of medicine worldwide and in preserving the honor and integrity of the medical profession.

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