by RONALYN BANAKEN
From left: UB’s Rose Chelle Rojas, Noah Rex Talosig, Jamie Rose Hombrebueno, and Ferdinand Tamulto joined over 200 students from across the country to discuss some of today’s most pressing issues that concern the Filipino youth during the national youth parliament. The body was able to pass eight resolutions –
most of them focused on youth development – which were turned over to Sen. Bam Aquino.
Students from the University of Baguio (UB) joined this year’s Parliament of Youth Leaders at the Manila Grand Opera Hotel on May 15-19 – considered the country’s biggest and most significant event on putting the youth at the forefront of policymaking.
Ferdinand Tamulto, Rose Chelle Rojas (both UB senior Political Science students), Jamie Rose Hombrebueno (Hotel and Restaurant Management), and Noah Rex Talosig (Accountancy) joined more than 200 participants from around the nation to craft some solutions to some of the biggest issues confronting the Filipino youth today.
The student participants worked on formulating policy recommendations in the areas of health, employment, education, and youth participation and development.
In an online discussion held as part of the convention, the participants went face-to-face on the most pressing concerns affecting the youth, such as comprehensive in-school nutrition program for elementary and high school students, workplace equality, teenage pregnancy, access to education, and HIV-AIDS, among others.
Through committee sessions and plenary debates, the body crafted resolutions, eight of them were approved. Some of the recommendations cover the following schemes: reforms for the Sangguniang Kabataan, improvement of health services for the marginalized sector and the indigenous peoples, and legislations on youth entrepreneurship.
The proposals, which will serve as guide for the government in making policies and in program development, were turned over to Sen. Paulo Benigno “Bam” Aquino, who graced the closing activity. In his talk, Sen. Aquino urged the youth leaders to be “more vigilant and committed to the continuing efforts of achieving our goals and the vision of the state.”
The new set of officers, which include actor Dingdong Dantes as Commissioner-at-Large, was also sworn into office by Sen. Aquino.
Sen. Chiz Escudero and Manila Vice Mayor Isko Moreno earlier opened the event. A lecture on the policy cycle and parliamentary rules and procedures followed the kick-off ceremony.
The delegates also joined the 2014 International AIDS Candlelight Memorial ceremony held at Liwasang Bonifacio. The parliament likewise hosted a dinner for the delegates of the ASEAN Youth Council at the Diamond Hotel, exchanging views and insights with the international visitors during the Council meeting.
The Parliament – held every two years – is organized by the National Youth Commission (NYC), the government’s sole policy-making body on youth affairs. It is mandated by law through Republic Act 8044 or the Youth in Nationbuilding Act.
Now on its 10th year, the national youth parliament serves as a platform for the young Filipinos in helping shape the nation’s government and politics.
The Government Internship Program (GIP) is one of NYC’s major contributions specifically to the poverty alleviation program of the government. In GIP, NYC arranges for other government agencies and private companies to hire out-of-school and/or unemployed youth as interns who will receive a monthly stipend equivalent to 75% of the minimum wage. – With reports from Ferdinand Tamulto