“The Youth is the hope of our future”, so goes a famous quote from our national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal, in recognition of the potential of the youth as future leaders, influencers and citizens of the country.

With this in mind and to instill in the youth of today a strong foundation to be good leaders and citizens, the National Youth Volunteer Coalition (NYVC) conducted its first webinar entitled Online MISMO Youth Volunteers Summit on June 27, 2020 which also happened to be NYVCs 2nd year anniversary. The event gathered around two-hundred (200) youth participants from all over the country with access to the event made available via web conference application zoom, social networking site Facebook and video-sharing platform YouTube.

PNVSCA Executive Director Donald James D. Gawe, invited by the NYVC to speak about Republic Act 9418 otherwise known as the Volunteer Act of 2007 and the impact of youth volunteerism, emphasized the importance of a law in volunteerism in that it concretizes the government’s recognition on the role and contributions of volunteers in national development. He encouraged the youth to be active volunteers, noting that youths who volunteer would eventually become civically active adults. He also called on the youth to volunteer at this time of pandemic where every available help in whatever form is needed, reminding them to observe protocols while undertaking volunteering work and sharing PNVSCA’s Be a Volunteer Platform where individuals and organizations may sign-up using Google forms available in the PNVSCA website and Facebook page.

The Be a Volunteer Platform is a partnership between PNVSCA and the NEDA Regional Offices (NROs) with the NROs managing the advocacy, referrals, matching, documentation and recognition of volunteer engagement in the regions.

For the MISMO Summit, NYVC has invited a roster of distinguished speakers who shared valuable information on youth related topics which includes: The Presidential Staff Officer for the National Youth Commission Region XI Mr. Mayjee Dela Cruz who presented the Philippine Youth Development Plan and the Youth Organization Registration Program, National Deputy Director for Goal Alignment of the 2030 Youth Force in the Philippines, Mr. Albrecht Arthur Arevalo who talked on the topic of Youth and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), NYVC National Executive Vice President, Mr. KC Bacolod who shared the organization’s vision in promoting resiliency and re-igniting patriotism among the youth and its mission of nurturing Filipino youth volunteers and organizations to be purpose driven volunteers of the country and I am Making a Difference Co-Founder and Search for Outstanding Volunteers 2013 Youth National Awardee Mark Conrad Ravanzo who shared and inspired the participants on his volunteer story in bringing education to the less fortunate children nationwide.

NYVC National President Reimart Averion welcomed the participants and expressed his appreciation for the guest speakers for finding time and be part of this webinar while Mr. Emmanuel Mirus Ponon, President and Founder of the Youth Advocates for the Philippines acted as the host and facilitator.

(Written by: Kenneth C. Siruelo) The author is currently the Senior Volunteer Service Officer, Policy, Advocacy and Technical Services Division, Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency.

(Visit PNVSCA website (www.pnvsca.gov.ph) and PNVSCA Facebook (facebook.com/PNVSCA) for other stories and information on volunteering in response to COVID-19).