Thursday, May 25, 2006

Studes Finish Summer Fest In Cebu

A participant tries his skills in sewing.

CEBU (Zamboanga Journal / 25 May) Dozens of students from across the Philippines attended the five-day Civic Engagement Module of the U.S. Embassy’s “Democracy Summer Fest: Engaging Filipino Youth on Democracy through Leadership, Civic Engagement, and the Arts” program in Cebu City.

The Civic Engagement Module, the second of three five-day modules in the summer camp, ended Sunday and was co-sponsored by the U.S. Embassy with the U.S. International Visitors-Philippines Alumni Association.

It helped students gain a better sense of how to start and maintain a nongovernmental organization (NGO), and carry out community service activities.

Student Cris Evert B. Lato, from the University of the Philippines-Cebu, said what she learned most in the camp was how to listen. “It takes courage to stand up and speak but even more, to really listen to others about their needs so you can create programs that can be effective,” she said.

Some 50 students participated in workshops on youth engagement and NGO management led by Filipino civil society activists, with support from a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer and U.S. Embassy staff. The students then spent time in the community visiting NGOs, and worked on a service project in cooperation with these local NGO partners that benefited the host community.

They also worked with the Cordova/Guadalupe Cooperative, a community micro-enterprise that sews fabric scraps into clothing.

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