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3 Mindanaoan youth groups shine in 9th TAYO Awards | TAYO 9

I was to happy to hear the good news from the Office of Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan recently. Three Mindanaoan youth groups were among the winners in the 9th Search for Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) this year! The TAYO Awards recognizes and supports the outstanding contributions of youth in nation-building.

Young Mindanawans Peace Builders, Youth Solidarity for Peace – Peace Advocates Zamboanga and the Association of Locally – Empowered Youth in Northern Mindanao all shone in the recently concluded TAYO 9 Awards. The awarding ceremony of TAYO 9 was held recently at the Heroes’ Hall in Malacanang.

Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, a former youth activist and who conceived the Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) Search together with the National Youth Commission in 2002, thanked the 3 Mindanao youth groups and the other award-winning Filipino youth organizations for serving as “beacons of hope in these dark times” and “effecting genuine change in our communities.”

This year’s crop of accomplished Filipino youth groups have come from all parts of the Philippines and represent a wide range of advocacies. In its nine years of searching for the most accomplished youth organizations, 180 have been chosen as winners and finalists, with hundreds more vying for the top spots each year.

The other winners of the 9th TAYO Awards are:

Industrial Engineering Council
LIRA (Linangan sa Imahen, Retorika, at Anyo)
Alyansa ng mga Kristyanong Mag-aaral – Responsable nga Balikatanhan mga Kabataan (AKMA-RESBAK)
Indak Kabataan Youth Organization
University of the Cordilleras – HapiyohMi Cultural Group
Aklan Catholic College Junior Philippine Institute of Accountants
AUL-STAGE (Sama-samang Tinig ng mga Aktor na Gumagalaw sa Entablado)


Check out the profiles of the 3 Mindanaoan youth groups that won in this year’s TAYO 9 search:

Number of Members: 148,291
Location: Maguindanao

Project Title: “People Enabling Actions for Community Empowerment and Sustainable Peace and Development in Southern Mindanao (PEACE-SPD Southern Mindanao)”


The Young Mindanawans Peace Builders proved that indeed, the youth is the hope of the nation. Their being young did not hinder them from making a difference in their community, especially in a place surrounded by conflicts. Believing that peace can be obtained by focusing on the side factors, they have come up with their banner program, the “People Enabling Actions for Community Empowerment and Sustainable Peace and Development in Southern Mindanao (PEACE-SPD Southern Mindanao).”

Among the activities under the program is conducting several peace advocacies that help Muslim, Christian and Lumads understand the culture, origin and traditions of each other. The group also implemented the Entrepreneurship Development for the youth, which seeks to help alleviate the economic situation in the area. Feeding programs, human rights advocacy, literacy programs in remote areas, as well as assisting technical vocational education for the youth, and honing Youth Peace Advocates through the Circle of Peace Training are also part of the program.

The Young Mindanawans Peace Builders was founded on February 26, 2007 by Mr. Norhashim Ulangkaya in Notre Dame of Marbel University, Koronadal City, South Cotabato. The organization is composed of Christian, Muslim and Lumads. YMPB is guided by its mission to advocate, inform, involve, inspire and celebrate social change led by and for youths through a multifaceted approach.

Number of Members: 150
Location: Zamboanga City

Project Title: “Peace Education through Summer Peace Camps”


The “Peace Education through Summer Peace Camps” project is an initiative that aims to “build a peace constituency among children and youth through the culture of peace and framework.” It is held annually, and is being spearheaded by the Youth Solidarity for Peace.

The organization believes that by conducting peace camps, it will help instill the culture of peace in the minds of the young people, which will eventually eliminate signs of apathy and violence. The Summer Peace Camp is a gathering of young people who are entailed to eventually carry the torch of leadership in the future. They’re composed of youth leaders from different institutions, out-of-school youths, young professionals, as well as young people with special needs regardless if they are Muslims, Catholics, or are a part of the indigenous tribes.

The Youth Solidarity for Peace is a youth organization that was formalized in February 26, 2008. YSP is the youth arm of Peace Advocates Zamboanga (PAZ) and Interreligious Solidarity Movement for Peace (ISMP). They have been regionally recognized for its contributions in forming outstanding leaders here and abroad.

Number of Members: 120
Location: Libertad, Misamis Oriental

Project Title: “Improving Food Security among Rural Youths and their Families”


The “Improving Food Security among Rural Youths and their Families” project of the Association of Locally Empowered Youth in Northern Mindanao (ALEY NM) is a project that focuses on rallying the youth and their families in the production of organic vegetables and tree seedlings using vermi-composted organic matter as fertilizer called, SaniFert (short for sanitary fertilizer). The fertilizer is mixed with human waste, which is now globally recognized as a valuable resource to use in growing more food and trees.

Vegetable production centers on vegetables which seedlings can be grown in any available direct to sunlight spaces and are later on distributed directly to the beneficiaries. The tree seedlings, on the other hand are sold to be able to raise fund to produce more. Aside from providing seeds to grow, ALEY NM also conducts training on organization building and development, as well as organizes neighborhood clusters to help network and sustain activities.

The Association of Locally Empowered Youth in Northern Mindanao (ALEY NM) is an organization that aims to empower the youths and give hope by focusing in making the barrio people productive, as well as improve local biodiversity by nurturing the land in a low-external input system and incorporating crop-trees-animals in a nutrient-cycle, sustainable manner. The organization also promotes ecological sanitation and the use of human waste as fertilizer.

* photos courtesy of E. Garcia and the Office of Kiko Pangilinan

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