Considered as the lifeblood of society, the youth sector plays a crucial role in the progress and development of its nation. That being said, the Nabunturan Youth Development Section under the Office of Mayor Chelita C. Amatong, focuses on creating different avenues for the youth in its pursuit of strengthening youth empowerment, and civic engagement in the locality.

     In partnership with the Provincial Government of Davao de Oro, under the leadership of Gov. Jayvee Tyron Uy, with the combined efforts of the Sangguniang Kabataan Municipal Federation, and the Municipal Youth Development Council, on January 29, 2022, more than a thousand youths took part in a summit entitled “Bulawanong Kabatan-onan, Walang Iwanan. Pursuing Peace and Youth Empowerment in the New Normal” at the Nabunturan National Comprehensive Gymnasium. The whole day event was packed with activities that were aimed to address, and have a better understanding of the issues and concerns of the youth in the municipality especially on the matters involving peace and insurgency, health, and other COVID-related concerns, and the proper usage of social media and communication. 

     Joy Sanguino or best known as “Amihan”, a former rebel who used to be engaged in activism and insurgency, shared with the participants her experiences and challenges when she turned against the law, and the realizations she had that made her decide to return to the fold of the government. Another brilliant speaker in the person of Mr. Reymond Pepito, an active consultant to the Department of Tourism XI and the Office of the Governor, emphasized the proper usage of social media in the age of technology where information can be easily accessed, and the importance of clear communication when trying to convey information or reach a certain understanding.

     Much to the delight of the participants, the organizers prepared games and contests enabling them to reap rewards and prizes, such as a motorcycle helmet sponsored by Hon. Kris Caballero, android smartphones, spaghetti packs, and cash prizes sponsored by Hon. Chelita Amatong, mixed merchandise from the Provincial Governor’s Office and Hon. Jayvee Tyron Uy, merchandise from Hon. Madel Cervantes, power banks from sir Steely Dan Caballero, and other cash prizes from Ms. Cathy Uy-Pangan, Hon. Jeovy Mandin, and Hon. Ivi Sarah Humol.

     Provincial and Municipal officials graced the youth summit and gave inspirational messages to the youths in attendance. Present during the event were Gov. Jayvee Tyron Uy, Atty Jose Caballero, Hon. Kris Caballero, Hon. Vivencia Secuya, Hon. Raul Caballero, Hon. Madel Cervantes, Mayor Chelita C. Amatong, Hon. Carlo Ancla, Hon. Ivi Sarah Humol, Hon. Alim Sotto, Hon. Francis Secuya, Hon. Jeovy Mandin, Hon. Mark Chan, sir Dennis Bugas, and sir Steely Dan Caballero representing his father, Hon. Connie Caballero.

     The youth participants from Brgy. Pangutosan won P 10,000.00 for the Yell Competition, while Brgy. Basak bagged P 5,000.00 for being recognized as the Most Disciplined group of participants.

     Despite the restrictions and limitations brought about by the pandemic, it is just but fitting to find means to instill a sense of vigor and enthusiasm on the youth in pursuing their advocacies, and involvement in the development of the society, while abiding by the health and safety protocols in place. The recently concluded youth summit also served as an avenue in solidifying the unity between the Local Government Unit of Nabunturan, and the Provincial Government of Davao de Oro. | by Prosperity M. Juab