Towards Healing as One: Filipino Youth of the New Normal

/ 10 August 2020

Unprecedented . . . that is what this COVID-19 is. It shattered everything that we have in just a short amount of time – the economy falling, people starving and dying, unemployment rate rising, and many more. Since the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic, declaration of the Philippines being under the State of National Calamity, and imposing Community Quarantine in several areas in the country, the government, together with other sectors, have been exerting their utmost efforts in order to lessen the drastic effects of this pandemic. One of these sectors who are really hands-on in responding to the needs of our fellow men is the youth especially the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK). The SKs from different localities have been addressing the needs of their people in various creative ways. Despite their limited resources they were able to pull-off remarkable actions such as giving COVID-19 essentials, having community feeding programs, learning on distance initiatives, running errands for those who are restricted to go out, conducting webinars, food security trainings, and many more.

As a way to reward and recognize the efforts and initiatives of the SKs, the National Youth Commission (NYC) – Office of the Commissioner representing Visayas in partnership with AngProbinsyano Party List (APPL) Congressman Alfred Delos Santos launched the “Search for Outstanding SK Response on COVID-19 Video Report Contest”.

The said project was the office’s small way to thank the SKs on their service not only for the Filipino youth but for all the citizens of the Philippine Archipelago.

The third runner-up winner of the said contest was the SK Council of Brgy. Rizal, Lapuz Sur, Iloilo City who presented SIETE – the 7 programs they have implemented during the COVID-19 crisis which aims to help every sector against the disease.

Next on the list, the second-runner up was the SK Council of Brgy. Camilmil, Calapan City, Mindoro who featured their ways on how to recover from the COVID-19 crisis through educating, taking action, embracing the present, and seeking for opportunities. Winner of the first runner-up place was the SK Council of Brgy. Poblacion 8, Dumaguete City who implemented information dissemination about the wrongful use of antibiotics as alleged medication against COVID–19.

Lastly, the one bragging the title of Outstanding SK on COVID-19 Response was the SK Council of Brgy. Caragñag, San Andreas, Catanduanes who distributed seeds and conducted vegetable gardening training for sustainable source of food during the pandemic to the locals.

For the young leaders’ efforts and supporting the government in fighting the threat of the COVID-19, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte recognized the service they have done for the country and expressed his heartfelt gratitude on a video message dated 18 July 2020.

As we continue on living with this new normal, the pandemic just showed the world what the youth as a sector is really capable of. That the youth is a group not to be looked-down due to the lack of age and experience. That the youth is capable of reaching heights for the betterment of the country. That the youth is really the hope of our fatherland. With the “Search for Outstanding SK Response on COVID-19 Video Report Contest” the capacity of the youth today as part of nation-building was showcased. Even with restricted resources, the youth never stopped on finding ways to help the community in overcoming these adversities right now.

With that, the NYC – Office of the Commissioner representing Visayas enjoins every youth to continue to take part not only in the fight against this invisible enemy that we have right now but also with building our nation to be the best it can be. Together, Filipinos will heal as one.