The graduation ceremony of 40 former Abu Sayyaf Group members was held at the headquarters of the 4th Marine Makusug Brigade in Brgy. Tandu Bato, Luuk, Sulu on December 9, 2021.
The said ceremony was organized in collaboration with Gagandilan Mindanao Womens Incorporated (GMWI), a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) headed by Miss Wahida Abdullah, the executive director.
The beneficiaries proposed hollow blocks and furniture making during the consultation meeting on October 12, 2021, and they were included in the livelihood skills training.
During this session, the facilitators conducted consultations with the ASG returnees and their supporters to determine the precise skills they desired for a sustainable life.
During the ceremony, the keynote speaker, Col. Hernanie S. Songano PN(M)(GSC), Commander, 4MBDE, was represented by Col. Jonathan C. Gabor PN(M)(GSC), the Deputy Brigade Commander, who spoke about the importance of capacity building for ASG returnees in order to provide them with a sustainable livelihood rather than handing out assistance. He also expressed his gratitude to GMWI for actively supporting the 4th Marine Brigade’s Localized Social Integration Program for ASG returnees.
Finally, he told the ASG returnees an inspiring narrative about the value of peace, trust, love, and hope, emphasizing the combined efforts of the Marines and numerous partners who were present on the occasion in continuing to promote their integration into society.
The finished products of their skill training, such as the furniture set and hollow blocks, were placed at the venue to demonstrate their newly learned talents and workmanship.