Youth leaders push for national peace and understanding
Youth leaders from all over the country recently convened an intercultural youth convention in Metro Manila to call for peace.
The convention titled Isang Lahi highlighted the diversity and richness of Filipino culture with a special focus on tribes from Mindanao. It underscored unity in diversity and the attainment of peace through better understanding.
Youth leaders and delegates from various ethnolinguistic groups in the country rendered cultural performances from Muslim tribes like the Iranon, Maranao, Maguindanaon, Sangil, Sama and Tausug. There was also a workshop on promoting unity amongst the youth with speakers from the government and non-government sector tackling various issues the Filipino youth is facing.
“We, the youth leaders … convene in this hall to promote peace through better understanding of our culture. We convene to prove that there is strength in unity. That we can reach much farther together. We do this to promote peace for humanity, through service above self, through believing in solidarity and trust towards each other as fellow Filipinos.” Ellirie Aviles the National President of both Sigaw ng Kabataan Coalition (SKC) and the Rotaract Club of Fort Bonifacio Global City said.
“We are here to learn so we can do more in serving as catalysts of peace, for change of beneficial permanence, to preserve the honor and integrity of our predecessors, for conflict resolution and sustainable development.” He added.
DOLE Undersecretary Bernard Olalia, one of the event speakers underscored the department’s commitment in providing technical skills training and employment opportunities for young people, eradicating all forms of discrimination especially among Muslims and tribesmen as a part of their effort in promoting peace. He also said that the youth’s participation in policy-making should be guaranteed to make policies more comprehensive, relevant and effective.
Assistant Secretary Paul Anthony Pangilinan of the National Youth Commission (NYC) was also there to talk on promoting youth engagement with the Government especially in Peace and Conflict Resolution.
“Kung ating titignan, ang kabataan ang bumubuo ng malaking bahagi ng populasyon ng bansa, the youth are the front-liners of the future generations, kaya kami ay lubos na naniniwala na kung ang mga kabataan ay mabibigyan ng kakayahan at pagkakataon na makilahok sa peace process, ay mas magiging epektibo ito.” Pangilinan said emphasizing the intent of the NYC to have a youth representative in the Government Peace Panel in the negotiation with NDF and MILF.
Other speakers are Jan Emil Langomez, Co-convener of a youth campaign on federalism, and Center for Governance and Peace Studies’ Executive Director, Atty. Algamar Latiph.
The convention was organized by SKC, Rotaract Club of Fort Bonifacio Global city, and Chosen Youth for Change in partnership with the Department of Labor and Employment, the Rotaract Club of San Francsico Del Monte Malaya Achievers, ARMM Liaison Office in Metro Manila, and the Rotary Club of Fort Bonifacio Global City. #