The Official Publication of Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health - Philippines

VYLH Visayas goes full circle with first Eastern Visayas Youth Camp

Written by Janelle Ruiz

The Volunteer Youth Leaders for Health (VYLH)-Philippines, with support from the Department of Health – Eastern Visayas Regional Office (DOH-RO8) and Newborn Screening Center-Visayas (NSCV), welcomed new volunteers from Eastern Visayas in a youth camp held at San Juanico Park and Country Club, Tacloban City last September 17-18, 2016.  

With the theme “Revolutionizing Health Promotion through Youth Participation”, the camp marked the first recruitment and training venture of the network in Region 8 and it was participated by youth leaders from Northern Samar, Eastern Samar, Biliran and Leyte. The camp was facilitated by volunteers from prior batches (Pioneer, K4, I3, E4 and Hiraya) as part of their commitment to the network and the tradition of passing the VYLH culture and practices to new volunteers.

The camp opened with an introduction to VYLH-Philippines facilitated by NCR-South Luzon Cluster Coordinator Rufus Adducul (I3) and Visyas Cluster Secretariat Floyd Edrea, RN (Pioneer) which was followed by an inspirational video message from the national adviser Dr. Carmencita Padilla, MD, MAHPS. Meanwhile, National President Christian Emmanuel Enriquez, RN (K4) emphasized the role of the youth in health issues. 

Invited guests graced the event and gave important talks related to the advocacies of the network. These include Ms. Yugie Caroline Demegilio, RN, MAP of NSCV on newborn screening; Dr. Lilibeth Andrade, Mr. Marvin Allen Guy-Joco, RN and Ms. Wenonah Wae Tutaan, RN on DOH programs and the progress of newborn screening in Eastern Visayas; Dr. Barbra Charina Cavan on the birth defect surveillance and the importance of folic acid supplementation; and Ms. Aster Lynn Sur, RN on preconception health and orphan disorders.    

Similar to other VYLH youth camps,the camp will not be complete without the team building activity that is expected to ignite camaraderie and test the leadership skills of the participants. After the participants were divided into groups, each group prepared yells and completed the tasks given in every station. Indeed, their hardwork, teamwork and patience paid off. All of the teams successfully finished the tasks.

The most awaited part of the camp is the commitment ritual where the participants solemnly pledged to uphold the principles of the network, serve their community, and share the advocacy of the network. During the solemn ritual, the facilitators lighted the candles with the names of the new volunteers as a sign of passing the legacy of the network.

The second day of the camp started with the morning exercise and a talk from Engr. John Paul Oira (K4) on Social Media and the Filipino Youth Volunteer. After the talk, National Secretariat Ms. Aster Lynn Sur facilitated the seminar on action plan construction and youth mobilization. The participants were divided according to their province for the regional planning session.  

But this was not the end of the two-day camp, as part of the VYLH-Philippines tradition, the new volunteers showcased their talents as each provincial group prepared traditional presentations. The facilitators were also not exempted as they presented the traditional dance of Eastern Visayas, the Kuracha. 

The Region 8 camp may have ended so fast, but the memories will live forever. The VYLH legacy will definitely continue as we save more babies and the future generations.

The new volunteers from Eastern Visayas were enlisted to the sixth and latest batch of VYLH-Philippines volunteers, Batch Kabilin. Kabilin is a Cebuano word for heritage or legacy. 

Aside from the event being the first youth camp in Eastern Visayas, the camp also completed the 2016 regional youth camp series in the Visayas after the successful conduct of the Western and Central Visayas youth camps last April and August, respectively.# 

Janelle Ruiz is a Registered Nurse and graduate of the University of San Carlos College of Nursing. She is a former President of the USC Nursing Student Organization (AY 2015-2016). Janelle became affiliated to the network as she participated in the 2013 Central Visayas Regional Youth Camp.

Editor RPascual

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