QCU-BLeSDS for the OSY participants, graduated

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July 26 – Various barangay leaders of Quezon City and also the officers of different organizations at QCU— who participated the QCU-BleSDS session that lasted for 6 months finally graduated via Youth Summit. It is also attended with the partners United States Agency International Development (USAID) and Education Development Center (EDC).

QCU Barangay Leaders on System Delivery Support for the Out-of-School Youth (QCU-BLeSDS for the OSY) is an executive training course that aims to train the leaders of Quezon City to formulate programs, projects, and activities via project proposals to solve the problems in the situation of OSY’s. The course lasted for six months, starting from November 27, 2021 up until May 7, 2022.

The youth summit was opened with the welcoming remarks of the University President, Dr. Theresita V. Atienza. She congratulated all the students for participating and completing the executive training course.

Likewise, Dr. David Hall, Chief of Party for USAID Opportunity 2.0, delivered a statement of thanks after the program. In addition to applauding the participants’ project suggestions, he expressed gratitude to those who make the executive course possible. According to Dr. Hall, they will grant the best proposal that can make difference and is potentially scalable and sustainable.

Dr. Thomas LeBlanc, Director of USAID Philippines’ Office of Education, then offers his words of encouragement. Citing statistics on the number of Filipino youngsters who are not in school, he described how USAID’s involvement in the Philippines began in the past six decades and explained how this led to the organization holding a USAID-funded executive course.

“With your commitments, your resilience, and your hard work. More young Filipinos will be supported to upskill, to be successful and to become productive members and leaders in their communities. As we continue to celebrate more than 75 years of diplomatic relations between our two great countries and more than 60 years of USAID working in development here in the Philippines, the US government, through USAID, remains committed to working with all of you in our shared goal of equipping all Filipino youth with the tools and opportunities they need so that they can have a better tomorrow.” Dr. LeBlanc concluded his speech.

Furthermore, the testimonies of selected QCU-BLeSDS students are followed. They discussed their experiences during the training with their groupmates, as well as what they learned throughout the sessions. Some of their project proposals were put into action with their chosen beneficiaries or communities.

Following their attestations, they were given a photo opportunity before proceeding to the presentation of project proposals from various groups. There are a total of seven proposals, each with a different focus (Education & Training, Labor & Employment, Peace & Order, Health, and Responsible Parenthood).

The granting of certificates of completion to all participants comes after the presentation of their project proposals. For students who finished all the modules and activities provided throughout the session, there is also a certificate of acknowledgment.

The message of solidarity from Quezon City Mayor and QCU Board of Regents Chairperson, Ma. Josefina “Joy” Belmonte comes after. It was represented by Ms. Maricris F. Veloso, the Head of Quezon City Education Affairs Unit on the Mayor’s behalf.

To finish the QCU-BLeSDS for the OSY Youth Summit, the Project Leader of the Executive Course, Dr. Racidon P. Benarte gave his speech. He summarized the journey of the whole session starting from virtual session up to face-to-face final session. Sending inspiration and gratitude to all the personnel, partner organizations, and participants.

Dr. Bernarte ended his message with this, “Congratulations on completing the training program. With that, I would say this project QCU BLeSDS for OSY is truly a blessing. Not just for QC and QCU, but for many of us. Making and realizing the output of discourse will also be a blessing to many OSY. Let us all be a blessing to everyone.” he said.

Therefore, the QCU BLeSDS for the OSY Executive Course is a great mechanism to train all the local leaders so that they can develop new strategies and solutions to end or lessen the number of OSYs in the city. With the new projects to apply within their community, they can uplift the lives of out-of-school youth together with determination, perseverance, and pure service.

Report by Jericho Paqueo

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