CEBU CITY, Philippines — One may feel sad, angry, anxious, scared, or all at the same time as the fight to flatten the curve continues.
The overwhelming fear of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), according to the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), may cause “strong emotions” for children and adults alike.
Loneliness may also creep behind shut doors as people leave behind their friends, practices, work, and some of their families, as they comply with mobility restrictions along with the widely-implemented enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).
It is okay to feel this way. But coping with and rising above the stresses of this pandemic defines a tougher you, and starts a stronger community of fighters against COVID-19.
“Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger,” the CDC said.
Health experts have encouraged engaging in enjoyable activities while staying at home to ease the stresses.
Residents of the municipality of Liloan, located some 22 kilometers north of Cebu City, for their part, may tap arts as a means of helping themselves cope with stress and reconnect with their families.
Liloan Mayor Christina Frasco, in Facebook post on Sunday night, May 3, 2020, announced the launching of Liloan Art Thrive, her collaborative project with local artists in an attempt to provide an outlet to relieve the COVID-19 and ECQ stresses.
Liloan Art Thrive will consist of three components: arts and crafts, painting workshops, and a painting contest.
The arts and crafts phase, online workshops, and an art pot making contest will be conducted and may be participated by Liloan students and their family members. The registration for the Art Pot Making contest is open from May 3 to 5 through the Liloan Art in the Park Facebook page.
The art pot making contest, Frasco said, will also be a way for family members to reconnect while spending ECQ at home.
“For Painting Workshops, I’m happy to collaborate with various artists from the Province of Cebu who will be giving online workshops. I’m hoping that in my engagement of the artists, it can also help them financially in this time of crisis,” Frasco said.
The third phase of the Liloan Art Thrive, a painting contest, will be open for all Cebuanos. It will consist of two categories, student and professional, where all residents of the towns and cities in Cebu province may compete.
Frasco, however, clarified that all expenses in the Liloan Art Thrive project will be from her personal funds and not from the municipal government.
The mayor, a mother of three, said she picked up the idea of art to cope with the COVID-19 stresses from her experience in parenting her children aged 7, 5, and 3 years old.
“Every morning, I homeschool them with the distance learning modules of their School (It’s…not easy.), and I try to implement a schedule that has a mix of academics, art, music, and play. I don’t always succeed, but I do try,” Frasco said.
Frasco added that she and her husband, fifth district Representative Vincent Franco Frasco, try to find ways to get their children entertained while staying indoors to give them a “semblance of a normal childhood in these abnormal times.”
Needing an outlet to cope with the pandemic herself, Frasco said it is no question that others in her constituency face the same necessity.
“Art has always provided that outlet for me. I am hoping that with this little project I’m launching, it can help people trying to cope as well,” Frasco said. / dcb