Sagip Babae Foundation | Community for Women Survivors of Abuse

I like what Women Advocate Joyce Spring shared during the launch of Sagip Babae Foundation. She said "Healing is not instantaneous so hold on to the process coz it's not an instant." 

We all have our own stories of struggles, pain, and heartaches. Some have heartbreaking stories brought about by childhood assault and sexual harassments. These women need someone who will listen to them without judgement.

In a recent survey, pre-pandemic, one in every four Filipino women had experienced domestic violence, the number of cases significantly increased during the height of the pandemic. The Philippine Statistics Authority reported an increase in cases of rape from 1,656 in 2018 to 2,168 in 2020. 

Yesterday, I attended the launch of Sagip Babae Foundation. It is a newly created organization dedicated to offering safe spaces for women who have suffered from and survived domestic violence, sexual harassment, and abuse in its myriad forms. Because such experiences can have severe short- or long-term effects on victims’ mental health, Sagip Babae will stress on granting aid and relief for these women in the aftermath of their ordeal. 

The occasion also marks the beginning of Sagip Babae Foundation’s online Facebook community for women survivors of abuse, giving them access to various activities and resources that may prove beneficial in their journey towards healing and recovery.

Women advocate and keynote speaker, Ms. Joyce Pring-Trivino shared three principles on healing. 

Ms. Joyce Pring-Trivino

1. Healing is not instantaneous, it's a continuous process

2. Healing is not linear. It has highs and lows, There are days you will feel better and not.

3. We need people to help us heal.

The foundation’s launch couldn’t have come at a better time. The overall socioeconomic effects of the pandemic have created situations that render women more vulnerable to abuse. A recent study by the Commission of Population and Development (POPCOM) found that 25 percent of surveyed Filipino adults consider violence against women one of the more critical issues during the current health crisis. 

Francesca FugenMelissa Rina Profeta

The deleterious effects of abuse likewise resonate with Sagip Babae founders Francesca Fugen and Melissa Rina Profeta’s own life experiences. They cite their personal trauma, as well as those of women they have helped, as their inspiration for starting Sagip Babae. Fugen and Profeta hope to provide - from the get-go - comforting assistance to women victims, aged 18 and above, from all over the country.

Beautiful Cheese BoardHeirloom Pearl Bracelet

Sagip Babae Foundation’s Facebook community will hold webinars and bi-monthly group sessions, and offer self-care strategies, wellbeing education, as well as more information on meditation and holistic healing. It will seek the best possible path of recovery and healing for beneficiaries by carefully matching them to the appropriate partner experts and practitioners. The foundation will shoulder all expenses for therapy and medication within their first month of participation, as well as half of the costs in the second and third months. 

The foundation will have a dedicated counselor for the initial session with beneficiaries. Core team members, along with volunteers for the foundation, have undergone mental health first responder and psychological support training to ensure that each beneficiary receives competent treatment during their time with the foundation.

Yours truly at the Sagip Babae Foundation launch

Sagip Babae commits to providing mental healthcare through its partnership with experts in the field such as Mr. AJ Sunglao, a licensed psychologist and mental health advocate, and Ms. Charlene R. Lucas, a registered psychologist and international clinical traumatologist. For a more extensive approach, Sagip Babae has also consulted with Third Eye Wellness, a provider of holistic healing services, and Ms. Jenny Umali, a life coach and Reiki practitioner. 

To show their support for Sagip Babae’s cause, a slew of mental health professionals, officials from relevant government agencies and organizations, and influencers will attend the launch. These include Ms. Carmen Reyes Zubiaga, an advocate for gender equality and chairperson at Angat Persons with Disabilities United 2030; Ms. Angel Dei, a social media content creator and women’s advocate; Ms. Cassie Uyoco, an influencer who advocates for destigmatizing mental health; Ms. Joyce Pring, a TV presenter and podcaster; and Cheris Faustino, a social media content creator and mental health advocate. A recorded video message from Senator Bong Go will also be shown at the event.

Sagip Babae hopes to forge lasting partnerships with these attendees moving forward in order to better serve their future beneficiaries. The foundation will endeavor to reach out to these women and offer them vital resources for safeguarding their mental health in the days ahead. 

If you know someone who has had the same experience and needed help, you may refer them to Sagip Babae Foundation. You may also help by becoming a volunteer or offering a donation.


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