Their right to education and protection from social vices were among the issues and concerns of over 300 youths of Zamboanga City and Basilan province when they got together to discuss and plan solutions to their human rights issues and concerns in a day-long session held on Satuerday, August 15 at the Centro Latino multi-purpose center in Paseo del Mar.
The forum-workshop was organized by the Zamboanga-Basilan Integrated Development Alliance, Inc. (ZABIDA) to empower the youths to achieve personal, group and communal development through rights-based programs and projects.
After listening to informational discussions on their human rights, they also documented their actual problems in a workshop and then depicted the same issues and problems in the form of visual art paintings.
The paintings will be used by them and ZABIDA in future advocacy events.
In her welcome remarks, ZABIDA executive director Espie Hupida pledged the NGO’s support to the participants in their various welfare projects and activities related to livelihood, education and peace. The youth sector, she informed them, is the fourth group to be placed under ZABIDA’s human rights program. The other sectors that previously entered into the engagement were farmers, women, and persons with disability. Four other sectors are listed for the same encapacitation program in months ahead, she said.
Commission on Human Rights regional office OIC Armando Borromeo gave a talk about human rights laws and conventions. National Youth Commission-Western Mindanao head Raymond Domingo talked about the youths’ participation in nation building and contemporary social behavior. Five youth participants gave short narrations of their “Experiences of Advancement and Violations on Youth Rights to Development, Protection, and Participation”. The sharers were Hadzramin Iblang Jaafar, Aiza Anuddin, Arman Mitra, Eidio Muriedas, and Basrin Nasir.
For the painting session, Nelvert Anino instructed the participants on “Painting as an Advocacy”, with tips on how to use specific colors for chosen effects.
Borromeo challenged the youths to work together to exert their rights towards achieving their individual and collective aspirations.