By PATRICK VAN WERSCH
for MindaNews .
Just two years ago, Datu Ibrahim Paglas Memorial College (DIPMC) in Maguindanao had a single sports team. This year, they started the academic year with 10. DIPMC’s sports director, 26-year old Al Rashid Sendad, points to the influence of the Mindanao Peace Games —a Mindanao-wide movement of schools and universities from all six regions—to explain the increase: “MPG changed our thinking about what it means to compete and that message has resonated throughout the school.”
Sendad recalls the days when sports was more or less an afterthought. And although his teams still lack proper equipment and a coach’s salary is nothing to brag about, the mentality in particular has changed for the better in recent years. “We believe that what makes our student-athletes happy will make us happy too. We choose to think that sports can help Maguindanao.” (To be continued)