Local beauty: keep our culture intact despite globalization

Ms. Geraldine Sario, photo courtesy of Mark Dennis B. Daniot

MALAYBALAY CITY (BukidnonNews.Net/January 4) Geraldine “Jadine” Sario, 22, spent the first day of the new year at home with her family reminiscing the highlights of her 2017 experience. She won 1st runner up in the Laga ta Malaybalay pageant on December 28.

Jadine is born of Bukidnon ancestry. She represented Brgy. Kalasungay in a pageant she did not expect after her experience in another pageant. She said however that she didn’t want to waste an opportunity that knocked on her door for many times already.

“I’m not getting any younger… this is also my way of taking my social responsibility as a resident of Kalasungay,” she said.

She graduated cum laude in Bachelor of Arts in International Studies at Liceo de Cagayan University. This influenced her more to value her own culture.

Jadine feels that cultural insensitivity is one of the problems in Malaybalay City.

“I can see that many countries clash because they fail to recognize other culture…I am afraid that this will occur in our city,” she said. She has traveled on personal capacity to Singapore and Malaysia.

She also emphasized that most of the residents in Malaybalay belong to a particular tribe yet many fail to appreciate it. Some deny their own tribal identity.

“Even if we are often named as millennial we should know what trend is worthy to follow and preserve,” she added.

Jadine shows her love for her culture through participating in different activities for the community. Being a dance enthusiast and an officer of Folkloric Dance Troupe in her university, she continues to patronize cultural and folk dances believing that this could be her little way of preserving her culture.

Ms. Joanna Ruth Sario Paloma, 27, cousin of Jadine and a former member of Bukidnon State University Chorale, remembers that dancing and singing has always been a gift to the Sario Clan from their grandparents.

Despite of the so-called generation gap, Ms. Paloma never failed to appreciate the beauty and intelligence of Jadine since she was younger.

Jadine bagged the Best in Gown, Best in Swimsuit, Best in Production and Face of Koylee awards during the Laga ta Malaybalay pageant. She also won the echoing cheers from the crowd.

Among those who batted for her was Ms. Ckezza Lae Galdo’s, a high school classmate.

“I never expected her to be joining pageants since she was very silent when we were in high school,” Ckezza said. She knows Jadine as a simple, humble and graceful person.

This dance enthusiast’s heart for the culture of Malaybalay brought her to the stage of Freedom Park as a candidate for Laga Ta Malaybalay. Her endeavor was to promote her advocacy on eco-tourism in Malaybalay City.

“It is more fun in the Philippines and much more in Bukidnon,” she claims.

Mr. Jose Benito C. Ronolo, Laga Ta Malaybalay pageant director describes Jadine as professional, well-mannered and a smart woman.  He said that it is so easy to work with her.

Among those who see pageantry as a way to empower culture is Russel Francis Alolino, 27. He added that even if he was cheering for another candidate, He sees Jadine as a great performer and even expected her to be crowned after receiving a number of awards.

Despite not bringing home the crown, Jadine still hopes for the best of Malaybalay as she welcomes 2018. She’s still hopeful for the preservation of the culture and eco-tourism of Malaybalay and Bukidnon despite globalization.

She is currently working in a management service firm based in Cagayan de Oro and continues to save her earnings to travel more and see the beauty of other cultures while sharing her own.

“At the end of the day what people will remember are the values and culture that we got from our ancestors, not the trendy acts that change every now and then,” she said. (Rashia Mae Deva E. Paano/ BukSU Development Communication intern. This story first appeared in Central Mindanao Newswatch on January 7, 2018.)