Written by Pellan Rhey Capuyan
Foundation University, Negros Oriental, Batch E4
On May 10, 2014, around 10 o’clock in the morning, bright smiles and positive looks of the members of Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health - Philippines (VYLH-Philippines) welcomed my first day in the alluring Intosan Resort in Danao City, Cebu. Long hours of "self- improving" and "educating seminars" as well as the sets of activities for this camp were held in the said resort.
The introduction of officers, orientation of the goal of the organization, and lots of energizers formally commenced the first day. The seminar on the first day was from 1pm to 6pm. It taught us the importance of having newborn screening for every newborn, having enough folic acid supplementation for all especially women, and helping individuals with rare diseases. After which the participants were implicitly taught of camaraderie in a group dinner and the camp's team building activities. The agenda for the day ended at 11 pm through a solemn commitment ritual. The night was perfectly suited for the participants as they internalize the lessons learnt that day.
The cup wasn’t full yet for the craving minds and hearts of the future catalysts-of-change and youth leaders in communities! The second day featured the seminar on action plan development and the talk by the National Program Adviser, Dr. Carmencita Padilla. But of course, the camp was also not all about seminars. Fun spiced up the event too! Different leaders showcased their hidden talents. These were followed by the cultural presentations of leaders across the Central Visayan islands and provinces, such as Cebu, Negros Oriental, Siquijor and Bohol. The second day was concluded by giving sort of “Kalog Awards” to different leaders for individuality or uniqueness as observed by the facilitators during the two- day camp. This was followed by picture taking of course! Definitely, it was a day full of very memorable experiences.
The camp will always be a part of me. I will always look back to it, not the camp per se but the things that I learned and the people behind the continuous success of the organization. To name a few, they are Dr. Carmencita Padilla - National Adviser, VYLH-Philippines; Dr. J Edgar Winston Posecion - Unit Head, NSC- Visayas, VYLH Visayas Cluster Adviser; Dr. Barbra Charina Cavan - Visayas Cluster Adviser; Ms. Lyn Sur, RN - VYLH - Philippines. National Secretariat; and Mr. Emmanual Enriquez, RN - President of VYLH – Philippines.
To the senior volunteers who stayed active despite their hectic schedule, like Kuya Jp, Floyd, Steven, Lime, Ate Jane, Leah, Salima, Karen, Choko and the rest who also served as facilitators during the camp -- thank you! There are so many active volunteer youth leaders whose passion to serve humanitiy keeps on burning. Pardon me for those who were not mentioned.
Similarly, I have been very grateful that I was able to join with the rest of the youth leaders because of the following who made it possible: my Clinical Instructor Ma'am Ivy Cornelia, Dean Nenita P. Tayko, administrators of Foundation University (FU), and the rest of the supportive individuals.
Indeed, the two-day camp taught me a lot of things. It gave me so much learning and realization. I can say that it renewed and made me more equipped with Skills, Knowledge and Attitude (SKA) of what a true leader should be. I will continue to be an effective leader and will keep the passion burning inside me until such time every individual will take a move in advocating for better health of Filipinos.
Pellan Rhey Capuyan is a Senior Nursing student at Foundation University in Dumaguete City, Negros Oriental. He is also the current President of the Foundation Universities Association of Student Nurses. He is one of the newest VYLs added to VYLH-Philippines roster after the 2014 Central Visayas Camp.