Inspire. Inform. Involve. - Voice Of The Youth Network


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2 Jun 2012

Inspire. Inform. Involve.

A. Inspire

Problems Identified

The greatest problem right now in the Philippines is not apathy but ignorance. People are not aware on what they can do for their communities. Because of the lack of awareness they become still and just accept everything that happens. People nowadays are hopeless because they thought they couldn’t do anything to alleviate the problems of the country. Because of these feelings of hopelessness some people tend to go abroad as immigrants. This further leads to the country’s ‘brain drain”. These ignorant people who do not believe that the country has hope chose to further put the country down with such kind of an attitude.

Instead of being part of the solution, most people try to escape their responsibilities for their communities. We are chain; the failure of one is also our own failure. No matter how Filipinos try to get away from their country for a greener pasture, they would always be haunted by the fact that they did not do anything for their country.

There is no other way but for the Filipino people to have a hand in nation building. We cannot do it alone that is why we ought to cooperate with one another.

The problem right now is that media create a negative image of the Philippines in the eyes of the mass public. What they present is an exaggerated and distorted picture of what are really happening to our nation. It is quite absurd, that whenever media pictures a particular rape incident, and when such is sensationalized, more rape cases begin to mushroom. When media pictured homosexuals being killed, this is followed by one incident after another. The media have an impact in calling the public to get rid of former President Estrada. This is how powerful the media are. Media can create and destroy if it chooses to.

How to begin?

Every time we meet other people, instead of telling them about how miserable our country is, why we don’t just tell these people what they can do and what other people are already doing.

We can also help media present more positive news. We cannot completely eradicate negative news because these are really abundant and common, but we can start gathering information on what different organizations and individuals are doing in alleviating the problems of the country.

We can inspire other people by telling them that there is still hope in the country. We can tell the students that they need not migrate for a greener pasture, what they can do is to work together in creating livelihoods for themselves and for others. The Philippines has a lot of natural resource and one of this are people skills. If we can only put all things together then we need not go anywhere else to earn a living. We just need to have initiative. We can also get capital from philanthropic organizations, individuals, companies, and the international community to start our livelihood projects.

If the people are demotivated because of the kind of politics the Philippine has, we can still inspire them by telling them of the projects being conducted in model municipalities like Puerto Princesa and try to duplicate such. Instead of demonizing our local Congressmen we can try to create proposals and encourage them to support our local initiatives. The problem with politician is that some are too short sighted, thus their projects are good up to election time. This is why most politicians build waiting sheds instead of investing in long term projects such as research and the youth

If we can show to our local congressmen that investing in the youth is one of the best way for them to stay in power then they will pour in support in youth organizations. We ought to show to our local politicians that we have a collective voice, that such voice can stir the kind of politicking and the use of tax-payers money in our communities. Politicians corrupt because it is the attitude of their constituents that pressure them to corrupt. Instead of investing in the youth, most politicians invest on their next campaign. A lot of money is wasted on posters that have their faces on them instead of diverting such resources in creating livelihood project or youth formation in communities.

We are the future of this country, we ought to tell everyone we meet that there is still hope,  we are that hope.

B. Inform

Problems Identified

The problems that are prevalent in our society regarding Information are the following:
·                    distorted information

There is no group that evaluates whether a particular news organization is really telling the public the news without their personal biases. Some news are made to favor those who paid of its release, some journalist call these “Praise Release”. Such usually happens before election where candidate use media to confuse the public by undermining or uplifting a particular politician.

·                    a lot of pessimism in media

About 90% of what is written in the broadsheet and broadcast in television and on radios are all about the things that affect the people negatively. There are only few news organization that tells the public about the positive things that affects them.

·                    not all people have access to media that caters to positive news

Radios although abundant have most often than not feature pessimistic perception of the country. There are few new materials such as broadsheets and internet materials that reaches rural areas.

·                    not all people know how to read and write
Not all people finish school. A lot of people in the rural areas never even got the chance to go to school. Thus, they knowledge is limited by what they hear and what they see on radio and television. Thus, most of them immediately absorbs a particular information as true instead of being critical.

·                    a lot of people would rather spend time watching telenovelas and cartoons rather  than reading a good book

This is brought about by two factors, most Filipinos did not have the chance to go to school and most people do not have the attitude to learn more than what they already know.

·                    abundance of smut materials in different media

The prevalence of pornographic materials both in the tabloids and in the internet causes young individuals to choose to spend more time on viewing explicit materials than learning more about the things that could really contribute a lot to their development.

What can we do?

To combat all the problems that have been identified, Voice of the Youth suggests two practical ways, these are:
·                    Positive Use of Media
Knowing that the media is like a double edge sword, we ought to use the blade which is not yet used a lot. For sure that blade will be even sharper than the other. Such a blade is the positive edge, the positive side of media. We can “pay it forward” when, upon hearing n our community that a particular organization or an individual have done something that benefits our community, we immediately report such in the people we know that is connected in the media so that such good act will not be left unknown by others. This would also make it possible for other organizations and individuals to duplicate such kind of an activity.

Voice of the Youth Network is currently affiliated with the SCU Section of Manila Bulletin and Voice of the Youth Radio in DZHH.

·                    Word of Mouth

We can also inform other people by simply telling them of what other organizations are currently doing in other communities. We can also inform others; especially those people close to us of other youth led activities or any kind of community base activities where they can participate.

C. Involve

When people are informed and when they are already inspired, it is no doubt that they will find it in themselves to make themselves involve in different activities that can help their communities. Involvement need not get all of one’s time; it can be that excess time can be spent productively in helping the community on different ways possible. What is more important is for people to act, no matter how small an act is, if such act can be multiplied through the “Pay It Forward” strategy, such small act can change society.


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