Hundreds of young Filipinos coming together

July 31, 2006

Hundreds of young Filipinos from the top of Luzon to the bottom of Mindanao came together today for the first time in a live dialogue on giant screens.

About 600 youth participated in the launching of a new kind of talk show series called “PeaceTech”. The series is all about building understanding through seven videoconferences focusing on peace and conflict.

The dialogues are also a modal for a global talk show that will connect youth from different countries around the world.

Between now and the end of the year, PeaceTech will leverage technology to unite youth instantly. By doing so, it aims to magnify the voice of children and youth on issues such as prejudice, poverty, armed conflict and peace building.

Today’s videoconference linked youth from a diverse range of backgrounds: AFP; victims of war and prejudice; Indigenous Peoples; Muslims; Christians; out-of-school youth; and students were some of the participants. And they came from many regions such as: Zamboanga del Sur; Maguindanao; Negros Occidental; Manila; the Cordillera; and Isabella.

UNICEF, AusAID and the Assisi Development Foundation are the main supporters of the series. UNICEF head for the Philippines, Dr. Nicholas K. Alipui, gave the opening speech.

Canadian manager of PeaceTech, Robin Pettyfer, said: “it was amazing to see youth come together on the screens. How often do you have an AFP solider speaking with a victim of war? How often can a poor 12-year girl from Negros talk with a Muslim girl from Manila about her future? Well, today that happened!”

Senator Ramon Magsaysay says: “The series is badly needed in a world where conflict is increasing. Whether it is in Israel and Lebanon, or Iraq and the United States, the world needs an international medium where young people can come together. PeaceTech does that. It’s an honour that AusAid and UNICEF want to start this in the Philippines.”

PeaceTech. is relevant to the Philippines where geography restricts inter-group dialogue. It gives young people in remote areas an opportunity to instantly reach out. And it provides security by allowing participants to meet with youth in insecure areas.

Its organizers don’t want the series to be just talk. They are approaching the Department of Education in hope that schools will use CDs from the dialogues in social studies classes. PeaceTech is also leveraging the Internet so that participants can continue their dialogues in on-line chats.

Many universities, schools, and community groups are involved in the series including Youth Aid. OPAPP is also involved. PLDT is providing the technology.

The next dialogue — PeaceTech 2 – happens August 28.

Advertisements

RP holds 1st peace-building tele-conference

July 31, 2006

July 31, 2006
The Manila Bulletin
RP holds 1st peace-building tele-conference
KABACAN, North Cotabato — The Philippines hosts today what has been dubbed as the world’s first peace-building tele-conference sponsored by the United Nations (UN) and the Canadian government. The project, dubbed as “PeacTech,” involves a seven-part televised two-setting talk show aimed at gathering and enabling representatives of concerned sectors to voice out their sentiments and recommendations on socio-political issues affecting Filipinos, especially the minorities. The first episode of the project will be conducted today at the University of Southern Mindanao (USM) campus in this battle-scarred town, on one hand, and in the University of the Philippines-Diliman campus in Quezon City, on the other. Kabacan Mayor Luzviminda J. Tan welcomed the project and thanked the organizers for choosing her town as site for three episodes of the peace-building project. She said the televised peace dialogues would help show how this town evolved from being a conflict-ridden municipality into a progressive town. Project manager Robin Pettyfer, a Canadian television journalist, said that 200 selected representatives of concerned sectors are expected to converge at the USM campus while a similar number of counterparts are set to gather at the UP-Diliman campus. The two participating groups will exchange information on various socio-political issues in televised proceedings, to be shown on huge TV monitors in both campues. Pettyfer said the UNICEF and the Australian government are using the talk shows as an experiment to bring together different groups that are “often divided by conflict.” He said the series is inclusive of children and youth from several sectors: Former Moro rebels, soldiers; Muslims, indigenous peoples, Christians; out-of-school youth; university students, and children from conflict zones. (Ali G. Macabalang)


A new kind of talk show linking youth from Luzon all the way to Mindanao

July 28, 2006

A new kind of talk show linking youth from Luzon all the way to Mindanao is about to make distance irrelevant.

Starting on July 31st, a videoconference series will unite hundreds of youth in Mindanao with hundreds of youth in Luzon on giant screens. Called “PeaceTech.”, the talk show is leveraging technology to unite youth in live dialogues about their future and their country’s future.

UNICEF and the Australian government are using the talk shows as an experiment.
Their goal: to bring different groups together, often divided by conflict.

The series includes youth from all sectors: former MILF; AFP soldiers; Muslims, Indigenous Peoples, Christians; out-of-school youth; university students; and children from conflict zones. Participants come from all over the Philippines: Zamboanga del Sur; Maguindanao; N.Cotobato; Lanao del Norte; Davao; Negros Occidental; Camarines Sur; Quezon; Cavite-Laguna; Nueva Ecija; Benguet; Mountain Province; and Isabela.

The series is a modal for a global talk show that will connect youth from different countries.

Senator Ramon Magsaysay believes in the series. He says: “The series is badly needed in a world where conflict is increasing. Whether it is in Israel and Lebanon, or Iraq and the United States, the world needs an international medium where young people can come together. PeaceTech does that. It’s an honour that UNICEF wants to start this in the Philippines.”

Canadian manager for PeaceTech, Robin Pettyfer, says: “Peace Tech is just as it sounds. It’s the peace in tech! We have the technology to unite people from the different sides in a global talk show. So it’s time we start!”

PeaceTech. is relevant to the Philippines where geography restricts inter-group dialogue. It gives young people in remote areas an opportunity to instantly reach out. And it provides security by allowing participants to meet with youth in insecure areas.

PeaceTech 1 on July 31 is expected to be an honest but direct discussion about “real problems” dividing Filipinos.

UNICEF and the Australian government are the primary supporters of the 7-part series. PLDT is providing the technology. The Assisi Development Foundation is organizing the project with the assistance of Youth Aid, OPAPP and numerous community groups, schools and universities.