Philippine youth spark World Forum: Our Common Future
by John Santeo Tamayo, Enderun Colleges
“When the people realize that we are no longer limited by geography and that our shared future needs the collective power of the youth, then together, we can create the kind of world we want to live in, in the future.” — Taiwan Vice President Chen Chien-jen
TAIPEI, Taiwan, October 30 to November 6, 2018 — We 6 Philippine members of the World Youth Alliance Asia Pacific together with 300 youth leaders from 19 countries were warmly welcomed at the 2018 Global Youth Trends Forum.
The Youth Development Administration, under the Ministry of Education of Taiwan organized this annual forum. The goal was to enrich the international outlook of young people and enhance their global mobility. The forum encouraged cross-cultural understanding and sparked creative collaboration among young people from across the world. This year’s theme, “Our Common Future — Cultivation and Development of Youth” seeks to transcend cultural diversity and geographical borders.
“When I find that we share the same or similar barriers, it helps make us close, so we can sympathize and laugh together. When I realise our different perspectives, I begin to see how others think, and I look back on myself, and think on how I decided something” observed Mikyoung Park of Korea Youth Work Agency,
Representing the Philippines were World Youth Alliance Asia Pacific Regional Director Mary Imbong; Regional Director for Operations Joyce Ann Cedeño; WYAAP Certified Members Stacey Nicole Bellido, Neil John Casagan, Ray Kerry Dacoseo, and John Santeo Tamayo, sole participant from Enderun Colleges.
Assigned a daunting subject matter, “Speak up for Our Future — Participation in Society and the World”, the Philippine team shared the country’s best practices and inculcated WYA philosophy and works. For one, they cited the advocacy of people-centered policies, recognizing human dignity from conception to natural death, which led WYAAP to air their dissent on the death penalty bill at the Philippine Congress.
“Not only did the Philippine participants present well and participate in the forum, they also radiated positive energy and made everybody around them happy,” remarked Emma Ryuka Leong of UNISC Japan. “I was very nervous about the presentation, but I felt a huge wave of relief when the Philippine delegation came to me afterwards to give me compliments. I really look forward to seeing them again one day.”
To cap it all, aside from leaving with selfies and groupies, and belting out some karaoke songs, Team Philippines gave a spot-on cultural presentation, highlighting Filipinos’ traditional attire, comical style, and ingenuity in the performing arts.
Farewells at the close were bittersweet, but the delegates promised to keep in touch and carry on their camaraderie.