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.