To better address adolescent programming through innovative strategies, the SUGPAT Adolescent Development and Participation Program for out-of-school youth (OSY) of Zamboanga City was officially launched on June 25.
The SUGPAT Adolescent Development and Participation Program of the Ateneo de Zamboanga university’s Center for Culture and the Arts in partnership with UNICEF Philippines was formally introduced to a crowd of over 200 at the Subanen Room, Garden Orchid Hotel.
Among them were UNICEF Philippines Country Director Lotta Sylwander, DepEd Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs and Alternative Learning System G.H. Ambat, Ateneo de Zamboanga University President Fr. Karel San Juan, and Zamboanga City Mayor Beng Climaco who all gave messages during the launching.
Also in attendance were partners from the Asia Society for Social Improvement and Sustainable Transformation (ASSIST) with their digital literacy program, DigiBayanihan and UNILAB Foundation’s youth engagement program Ideas Positive.
The Office of the Vice-President Leni Robredo was also represented by its Special Projects Unit Head, Mr. Raffy Magno.
The SUGPAT program, which was established two years after the 2013 Zamboanga Siege, has expanded its mission for out-of-school youth to cover areas on policy, research, and barangay leadership for adolescent development and participation.
The new batch of fellows for the Alternative School for Peacebuilding and the Arts (SUGPAT-ALSPA) was also presented in the launch which included 33 out-of-school youth from all over Zamboanga City. The fellows were selected through a rigorous selection process which included a paper screening and an interview.
The fellows will go through 6 months of intensive leadership and development classes that will put a premium on creativity as a thinking model, hoping to form creative peacebuilders by the end of the program.
Making ‘every dream matter’
SUGPAT since its inception has long believed that every dream matters, and this was further manifested in their commitment ceremony where they solicited responses from the crowd answering the question: “What is your dream for the youth?”
The answers formed together to create the image of the logo of SUGPAT, a testament and reminder to the mission and call to continue working towards achieving the dreams for the OSY and adolescents of Zamboanga City.