Youth and Education Story

Better Together

The Filipino word “tayo” (‘we’ in English) connotes community, belongingness, and involvement. Picture people being together rather than alone. Partner it up with a vision, say, nation-building, and “tayo” levels up to a promise of building together towards one goal without leaving anyone behind. This is the vision of the Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) Awards, a dream shared by youth organizations across the nation whose stories of inspiration and passion are worth celebrating.

The Tobog Youth Organization (TYO) from Oas, Albay is one such group.  The TYO members remodeled and refurbished their local day care center not only to engage and motivate kindergarteners to attend and learn at school, but also to give back to the institution that molded them during their formative years.

Another organization that sees great potential in the next generation is the University of the Philippines Academic League of Chemical Engineering Students (UP ALCHEMES). Their annual project gathers high school students across the nation for a research fair that aims to inspire them to pursue careers in research.   

Youth Sports Advocacy (YSA) believes that one can be an agent of change while doing what he does best.   These varsity athletes host sports clinics for children in Tandang Sora, Quezon City. They aim not just to teach kids athletic skills and techniques, but also to build values such as discipline, teamwork and camaraderie. 

Budding entrepreneurs of Youth Entrepreneurship and Cooperativism in School, a student organization at Bayugan National High School, run a school supplies store that has earned enough to send one of their members through college, and build an office and a laboratory center at the school. Now, plans to purchase sewing machines for the school’s Technology & Livelihood Education Department is in the works. 

Living up to their group’s name, Keep Hope Alive, youth from Mansalay, Oriental Mindoro have risked walking the extra mile to deliver basic services and educate Mangyan communities on basic literacy, health, environmental awareness, youth and community empowerment, and cultural preservation.

Values formation is at the core of the work of I am Making a Difference (I am MAD) from Mandaluyong, Metro Manila. Through dynamic activities, I am MAD members are able to inspire children to reach for their dreams, to be responsible citizens who love God, others, the environment, and the country.

Students of the University of San Jose – Recoletos School of Law and Community Enrichment from Cebu City put a positive spin on jail time by providing paralegal assistance for indigent detainees at the Mandaue City Jail.

Three organizations have taken different approaches to provide solutions to environmental issues. Students at the Environmental and Climate Research Institute – De La Salle Araneta University conducted risk assessment studies and installed a solar-powered ultrasonic flood detecting system in Tarlac.  To protect the forests in the mountainside Rizal province, the Tanay Mountaineers teach community members how to produce charcoal briquettes as an alternative to cutting trees for charcoal. Kanlaon Theater Guild members educate communities on climate change and disaster preparedness through theatrical performances.

This year’s Coke Barkada Awardee, Youth Working for Change from Basilan in Mindanao shares Coca-Cola Foundation’s passion for water access. Despite security threats, challenging terrain, and limited financial capacity, the group worked bring to potable water to upland communities in the province. The group has provided potable water to almost 100 households in the villages of Limbo-Upas and Atong-Atong, in the municipalities of Tipo-Tipo and Lantawan respectively.

These young Filipinos are beacons of light in these challenging times. Marching in different rhythms but all in the same direction, they give us hope that the Philippines will indeed be a better place for generations to come.

Ten Accomplished Youth Organizations (TAYO) is an annual search for Filipino youth organizations with outstanding work in their schools and communities. It is co-presented by the TAYO Awards Foundation and Coca-Cola Foundation Philippines.

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