The Department of Environment and Natural Resources-CAR is celebrating the women in government service as it observes the 2023 National Women’s Month.

For the month of March, the Department, through the Regional Gender and Development Focal Point System (RGFPS), has lined up activities all aimed at honoring its women officials and employees, and promoting gender equality and inclusiveness among all its employees.

The National Women’s Month will be kicked off on March 6 where an information drive about the celebration and GAD will be conducted.

For the whole month, the employees shall observe ‘Purple Wednesdays’ where they shall wear purple-color clothing.

A Zumba activity will be conducted every Friday to promote wellness among all employees.

On March 8, an orientation will be conducted on Gender equality, disability and social inclusion (GEDSI) in climate change by the National GFPS.

On the same day, the Department will launch a Women’s Bazaar where legal service will be offered by the Legal Division.

On March 9, the Department will join the first quarter national simultaneous earthquake drill led by the Office of the Civil Defense. For this activity, the DENR-CAR will focus on the readiness of women in such circumstances.

On March 13, the Enforcement Division will lead a talk on fire prevention in preparation for the summer season.

On March 16 to 17, the RGFPS will conduct the 1st Quarter General Assembly to discuss GAD activities for the year, as well as address GAD-related issues or matters in the DENR-CAR.

Previously, select employees participated in the 2023 GEDSI Summit held in coordination with the Civil Service Commission-CAR.

The month-long celebration will be capped off with a culminating program. During such, the Department will launch the Search of Outstanding Women Leaders, conduct a GAD talk, and offer services such as body massage, manicure, pedicure and haircut to women employees.

In line with the United Nation’s international Women’s Day theme, this year’s focus is “DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality”. It calls for the empowerment of women and girls toward maximizing their opportunities and benefits from innovation and technology as well as bridge the gender gap in ICT and connectivity. The same is aligned with the priority theme of the 67th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women “innovation and technological change, and education in the digital age for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls.

Tree hugging is good for one’s health and wellness.
In time for the Valentine’s Day, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-CAR enjoins everyone to hug trees to show love for nature, at the same time derive benefits from it.
Apart from being associated with the fight for climate change, tree hugging is good for mental health. Studies have shown that frequent contact and hugs with people leads to higher oxytocin levels, a hormone also known as “love hormone” or “cuddle hormone”. The same feel-good hormone is produced when hugging a tree.
According to studies, another psychological benefit of tree hugging, and simply, communing with trees include decrease in negative moods of depression-dejection, tension-anxiety, anger-hostility, fatigue, and confusion. This is as, communing with trees has been shown to lower blood pressure, cortisol levels, pulse rates and sympathetic nervous system activity, while increasing parasympathetic nervous system activity.
The tree hugging movement, also known as Chipko movement, is a forest conservation advocacy which originated in India. The Hindi word, “Chipko” means “to hug” or “cling to”. It demonstrates the embracing of trees in the Garhwal forests by rural villagers, mostly women, to protest and protect trees slated for government-back logging for commercial purpose. The non-violent agitation is said to be inspired by the story of Amrita Devi Bishnoi.
Amrita Devi is a lady of Khejarli village of Jodhpur, Rajasthan, known for sacrificing her life by hugging a Khejri tree to prevent it from being cut down by the king’s men. Her death caused some 363 villagers to follow suit and offer their lives to save trees.
Although inspired by ecological activist movements, tree hugging has since gained popularity as an environmental activity aimed at promoting connection and appreciation of nature, and improving human health and wellness.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources-CAR held its annual general assembly celebrating wins from 2022.
Regional Executive Director Ralph Pablo hihglighted the accomplishments for 2022, which include: the Bronze award on the Program to Institutionalize Meritocracy and Excellence in Human Resource Management from the Civil Service Commission; DENR-CAR ranking 1st in Land Management among all DENR offices nationwide; DENR-CAR ranking 1st in terms of Client Satisfaction survey; being one of the best regions in terms of Alternative Dispute Resolution; Certification on Electricity and Fuel Consumption from the Department of Energy; the office's ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001-2004 Certification; and being the Best Performer in Land Activities in 2021; among others.
He also humbly mentioned the DENR-CAR officials' accomplishments, specifically regional and field officials becoming part of the qualifiers in the Environmental Awards for Governance and Leadership Excellence (EAGLE); and him being named as the Outstanding Geodetic Engineer of the Year by the Professional Regulations Commission.
"So many successes were achieved in a time when we’re adjusting and adapting to adverse circumstances. From adapting to new normal to going back to normal, the challenge was for us to sustain the boons of both times," he said.
A brief oath-taking ceremony was conducted for nine newly-appointed employees from the DENR-CAR Regional Office and the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office - Alfonso Lista.
The Regional Director told them that while they were given the gift of promotion, they should give back by rendering excellent public service.
Apart from the discussion of accomplishments and the oath-taking ceremony, the employees staged presentations and participated in capacity-building activities during the general assembly.
Engr. Ralph Pablo has been declared an Outstanding Geodetic Engineer by the Professional Regulations Commission.
A stalwart in the geodetic practice in the Philippines fully engaged in the pursuit of a reliable land survey in the country as a foundation for developmental efforts and the advancement of a responsive land information system, Engr. Ralph C. Pablo has silently yet effectively played a big role in allowing geodesy to shape national development.
Owing to his long career in the Geodetic practice dating back in 1985 as a Surveyman for the Bureau of Lands in Region 2, he acquired a firm grasp of the importance of geodetic controls in a country that can cope with the changing requirements of economic development. Hence, 25 years later in his stint as the Director of the Land Management Bureau (LMB), he started the operationalization of the Land Administration Management System (LAMS) that saw the digitalization of Land Records and of the Inspection, Verification and Approval of Surveys (IVAS). He also initiated the installation of LAMS e-Survey Plan to guarantee a faster approval process through Digital Land Survey Data (DLSD) which provides a faster survey returns verification and approval process. He is also responsible for the conduct of Inventory, Sorting and Grooming (ISG) of all Land Records in the 16 Regional Offices, including their respective CENROs and PENROs. But none of these compare to the fact that it was this unassuming fellow that spearheaded the completion of the Cadastral Survey Project in the country, his legacy, a timeless extension of his hard work and dedication to his craft that everyone in the geodetic practice will cherish forever.
Already wielding enormous influence in his chosen profession, he never failed to continue supporting and empowering his comrades. Through his leadership, a calibration baseline was established in Clark, Pampanga to ease the burden of geodetic engineers who used to bring their equipment to Manila for calibration. With such initiative, he was able to successfully gain the support of the Geodetic Engineers of the Philippines, Incorporated (GEPI) in the continued improvement of LAMS in its Asset Reform Program.
In addition, he was also very engaged in the in-house training conducted on Basic Mapping, Aerial Photo Interpretation and Manual Geographic Information System in all DENR Regional Offices in the country. He likewise led the crafting and review of the Manual on Land Survey Procedure in the Philippines in his capacity as the Chairperson of the Policy Review Committee of the LMB.
Not resting on the laurels of his own successes in the field, he extended his contribution to the geodetic practice by conducting and publishing a study entitled: “Cadastral Survey Program: Its Perceived Effects on the Economic Development of the Province of Batanes.”
For his exemplary professional contributions, he was accorded the International Golden Award in full recognition of his meritorious and dedicated services rendered to the people, impressed with the seal of excellence, high sense of honor coupled with true devotion as a civic leader in the community with a resounding manifestation of integrity. He is also a recipient of the Maharlika Award – Outstanding Civil Engineer for his admirable contributions to his chosen field of endeavor in 1990. In 1991, he was recognized as the Model Employee of the Year in DENR-Cagayan Region and received the same citation in 1993 as a member of the Technical Services. He was also one of the Top Ten DENR Employees commended by Secretary Angel C. Alcala in 1994. He became the Model Section Chief of the Year in 1995 and 1996. He was also awarded the Most Outstanding Geodetic Engineer of the Philippines (Academe Category) in 1997; the Most Outstanding CENR Officer Northern Luzon Area in 2001; Most Outstanding Geodetic Engineer of the Philippines (North Luzon Area) in 2002; Most Outstanding Geodetic Engineer of the Philippines (Gov’t. Sector) in 2007; Outstanding Geodetic Engineer in the Government Service in 2013; Regional Executive Director of the Best DENR – Regional Office in 2017 and 2019; with his leadership, DENR-CAR bagged the first R.I.V.E.Rs for Life Award in 2019. He was also handed a Plaque of Recognition on Environmental Award for Governance and Leadership Excellence (EAGLE) as a Top 5 finalist for his outstanding performance as a Regional Executive Director and Plaque of Recognition for the exemplary performance of DENR-CAR as a Top performer in the implementation of Land Administration and Management Programs and Activities in 2019. A similar EAGLE award was recently received by him for the year 2021 as one of the Top 5 finalists among Regional Executive Directors of the DENR nationwide. Finally, he was chosen as the 2022 Outstanding Professional of the Year in the field of Geodetic Engineering by the Professional Regulation Commission.
As a consistent officer of the GEP from the Regional Division to the National Directorate, he was able to promote the professional welfare and advancement of its members through comprehensive development programs and seminars; intensified information and education campaigns of all programs and projects of the GEP; invitation of experts for the presentation of state-of-the-art surveying technology and the creation of a good working relationship with concerned agencies in the Geodetic Engineering profession such as the DENR, PRC, DAR, DILG and the LRA.
Through the years, he was a former National President of the GEPI (2013-2014); National Board of Governor (2004-2005), North Luzon Area Assembly Chairman (2004-2005) and Regional President of Regional Division II (2005-2006, 2007-2008); North Luzon Area Assembly Board of Director (2007-2008); Regional Vice President in 2003-2004, 2008-2009, 2009-2010, 2011-2012 and 2012-2013.
Besides his commitment with the GEPI, he is also a member of the Philippine Institutes of Civil Engineers, Philippine Institutes of Environmental Planners, Vice Chairperson of the Lands Integrated Cooperative, Member of the Inter-Agency Task Force on COVID-19 Pandemic (CAR Region), the Press Relation Officer of the Association of Career Executive (ACE), President of the Gosi National High School Alumni Association and President of the Barangay Gosi Sur Pastoral Council.
An educator, environmental planner, astute engineer (civil and geodetic), a revered leader, a dedicated public servant and a Career Executive Service Officer III, with the hard work and excellence he has invested in all his involvements, his legacy is forever intact.

Out of 125 participants of the Environmental Quiz, Creshia Liskeng of Mt. Province snatches the First Place with P 5, 000 cash prize while Dexie Liskeng from the same province places Second with P 3,000 cash prize; and Aldana Morelle Heyrosa, Baguio City resident, in Third with P 2, 000.

The Environmental Quiz was conducted online with participants from the different provinces in the Cordillera Administrative Region from ages 15 to 18 years old.

The participants were given a set of questions related to the programs, policies and activities of the agency - from national to local.

The activity also helps the agency to determine information that may be used in planning future Information Education Campaigns.