Included are programs on health and wellness, especially those on killer diseases. One major health and wellness concern in the Philippines today is the rise in cases of HIV-AIDS, especially among the youth and young adults. As such, DEA shall continue to establish HIV-Competent churches.

In relation to this, a DEA-wide program focusing on emotional and mental health thru clinical/pastoral counseling for PLWHAs, drug dependents, etc shall likewise be established. The MODEL (medical, optical, dental, evangelistic, and livelihood) ministries with the MODEL Bus (solicited from a private bus company and then retrofitted) is a novel example of how the Kalusugan Program can be brought to a lot of needy areas, especially in Mindanao. Kalusugan-related activities can be conducted on a regular basis, not only during church anniversaries (e.g., Health Fair Sunday, World Aids Day, Nutrition Sunday, etc.).

DEA will further establish the “FIT UMC,” the area’s contribution to the call for a “Happy, Healthy, Holy” living (Abundant Health), which features the “Hulapalooza” and a community Weight Loss Challenge. Because many churches already have feeding/child nutrition programs, DEA will endeavor to implement generally-accepted standards for such interventions in order to level-up this ministry with children and contribute to building Mother-Baby friendly local churches. Local churches and districts are also enjoined to make an inventory of members and friends who are medical and health professionals, and organize them under the UMD (United Methodist Doctors).

The Kalusugan Program also involves a more proactive approach to health. Thus, all United Methodist families, both lay and clergy, who have vacant lot spaces in their homes and churches are encouraged to grow their own food! Organic garden modules that partially or entirely support a family’s nutritional needs in terms of greens and vegetables have already been well established by many practitioners. We only need to follow their lead and DO IT OURSELVES! DEA-wide health program building Churches as Health Outposts by continuing to have Christian Healthy Lifestyle Ministry on NCD.